Tire recycling markets change over time

Tire recycling markets change over time

By Editorial Staff, Resource Recycling

Economic conditions have changed how the U.S. handles scrap tires. Some uses are growing while others are not as dominant as in the past.

On the decline due to the current economy is the use of scrap tires as a fuel in cement kilns, reports the Rubber Manufacturers Association. Although more than one-third of scrap tires are used as kiln fuel, over the past few years, scrap tire use in cement kilns has declined by about 40 percent because of a slump in construction. RMA's Michael Blumenthal also reports that the conversion of scrap tires into crumb rubber for use in athletic fields and in road asphalt, which represents about one-quarter of the recycling market, has been negatively affected by reduced governmental spending.

On the upside, scrap tire processors are looking to develop new markets, such as tire-derived rubber modified asphalt or other ground rubber products. In addition, economic conditions have led consumers to keep their tires longer and to be more willing to purchase used tires.

Approximately 300 million scrap tires are generated annually in the U.S., with more than 80 percent being reused, recycled or converted into energy.

Ousei Banner

To return to the Resource Recycling newsletter, click here.

.

.