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Tyre and Rubber Recycling Magazine tells about tire and rubber recycling in Crimea, which became possible through public funding.

Within the legal framework in the area of waste recycling adopted at the beginning of the year, each Russian region was ordered to establish its own municipal operator to manage waste collections by 26 of September, sorting tires and further sending them for recycling or other ways of recycling or other ways of recycling as well as to determine a regional model of waste management. Not all regions have succeeded with this task, first of all because, so far, regional officials have failed to make this system economically feasible. Amid the harsh economic situation in the country, the government has shown itself to be unwilling to put additional financial burdens to in the form of recycling fees onto its citizens, while the culture of tires used in Russia envisages that for any car owner or transport company it is better to throw used tires away, rather than pay money for their appropriate recycling. As a result, state money remains a crucial part of waste management programmes at a regional level.

In this situation, the new Russian regions, Crimea and Sevastopol, seem to be the winners, since over the past few years they have turned out to be the most heavily subsidized territories within the country, and this situation will most likely continue in the future. For instance, the Economy Development Ministry’s Programme for the Socio-Economic Development of Crimea and Sevastopol for 2016-2020 involves and unprecedented amount of funding of RUB 736 billion (USD 12 billion).

It’s quite clear that improvements in the ecological situation in the peninsula will be part of this development, and the industry will account for some part of this money. This was confirmed in June by the Minister of Environment and Natural Resources, Sergei Donskoi, who claimed that by 2020 in the region five clusters for the recycling of wastes, including tires, would be created, adding that the overall amount of investment for this purpose will be RUB 3 billion (USD 50 million). As a result, by 2020 huge dumps located across the territory of the peninsula should start disappearing.


Tire stockpile and recycling facility in Crimea. Image source:

The Crimean authorities are already subsidizing recycling activities, for instance on March 22, the Ministers Council of the region issued a decree for granting subsidies to the waste recycling company KrimEcoResources. Earlier this year and in 2015 similar steps have been made in regard to other market participants, so that they managed not only stay afloat, but also to make good money. Until 2040, the whole territory of the peninsula will have the status of the so-called Special Economic Zone, so each person who makes investments into the facility of RUB 30 million (USD 500,000) or more, will get significant tax breaks. In addition, subsidies involve the reimbursements of expenses not only for capital spending on the construction of new facilities, but also for routine spending on the collection, sorting and recycling of tires. Altogether, this has resulted in the fact that Crimea seems to be the best place in Russia to start a business in tire recycling, providing the investor is not afraid of international sanctions. As long as Ukraine considers Crimea as a temporarily occupied territory, any foreign of big Russian investor engaged in business activity in Crimea, risks being subjected to serious problems, with the freezing of banking accounts in the U.S. and the EU and possible criminal prosecution in Ukraine.

Comfortable Conditions

There are several companies, operating in the area of tire recycling in the peninsula already. One of them, KrymEcoPlitka, has facilities in two cities – Simferopol and Kerch. Both of them are involved in the mechanical processing of end of life tires, with the Simferopol plant producing rubber chips and the Kerch plant outputting crumb rubber. The production of the Kerch facility is used for the further manufacturing of rubber coatings with different thicknesses and densities. Special mixers are blending crumb rubber with adhesive, then pouring this mixtures into molds and covering with press0type machines.

“Our company was opened not so long ago, and as yet we still have not even worked for a year,” says director of sales department of KrymEcoPlitka Dmitry Tsepa. “We use the crumb rubber for the manufacturing of tiles, rubber mats and seamless coatings. We can make rubber coatings of any density – from 800 to 1500 kg per square meter. Depending on the crumb will be coarse-graded or fine graded.”

According to Tsepa, in general, there is high demand for their production in the peninsula, including the manufacturing of coating for children playgrounds, as well as coatings for gyms and various exercise rooms.

“Rubber mats have steadily grown in popularity. If previously there were individual orders for small lots, now they are purchased in tens and hundreds of square meters. The rubber matting is used not only in the gyms – it is also required for the installation of ramps and even the floors of livestock farms,” Tsepa says.

At the moment KrymEcoPlitka is in negotiations with regional authorities on the possible use of crumb rubber for the construction of roads and getting all types collected during a volunteer clean-up free of charge. The cost of recycling of one tone of tires at the company’s facilities is about RUB 2,000 (USD 33) per ton. Another company KrimEcoGidrotech is recycling tires for the manufacture of heating oil. It has points of collection in Simferopol, Sevastopol and Feodosiya, receiving tires for RUB 4 (USD 0.07) per kg/ The company owns special installations, which after the processing of tires obtains pyrolysis fuel oil.

According to Igor Mikhailenko, the first deputy minister of ecology and natural resources for Crimea, by 2017 at least three new facilities should be established in the region for tire recycling one near Simferopol, the second in Kerch and the third – near Evpatoria and Saki. They would process tires for manufacturing rubber coatings and for use in concrete mixtures.

Articles source: Tyre and Rubber Recycling Magazine