Every year, the states in Region 3 face the task of managing millions of scrap tires. Fortunately, markets now exist for the majority of these scrap tires. These markets include ground rubber, rubberized asphalt, civil engineering applications, and tire-derived fuel. In 2007, national markets for scrap tires were consuming approximately 4.1 million tons, or 89.3 %, of the 4.6 million tons annually generated scrap tires:
- 54.1% used as fuel derived fuel
- 17.2% converted into ground rubber and recycled into products
- 12.2% recycled or used in civil engineering projects
- 2.9 % used for reclamation projects
- 2.2 % exported
- 0.8 % used in agricultural and miscellaneous uses
(Source: Rubber Manufacturers Association, 2007.)
Through these innovative uses of scrap tires, markets for scrap tire material continue to grow throughout Region 3. With both Virginia and Pennsylvania, EPA Region 3 participates in a national work group to increase communications between state regulators, market development officials and industry. The goal of the work group is to support existing markets while continuing to seek out innovative new market ideas.
States and municipalities throughout Region 3 are working to actively address scrap tire proper disposal and recycling in the Mid-Atlantic. Projects include:
- Discarded Tire Removal in Western Pennsylvania — Region 3 awarded a grant to PA CleanWays a nonprofit organization fighting illegal dumping and littering in Pennsylvania, to educate youth on improper disposal of waste tires and conduct clean ups of illegally dumped tires. In 2002, PA CleanWays reported that 369 volunteers removed 6,195 tires in 2,004 volunteer hours. A number of sponsorships and in-kind support from 14 tire dealers paid for the tire disposal allowing PA CleanWays to leverage EPA funds for further tire clean up efforts.
- Removal and Disposal of Illegally Dumped Tires in Philadelphia — Region 3 awarded the city of Philadelphia $30,000 from the Regional Administrator's Discretionary Fund to have the Streets Department work with 20 neighborhood block captains and 17 community groups and civic organizations to collect illegally dumped tires. A total of 10,573 tires was collected and sent to the American Ref-Fuel plant in Chester, Pennsylvania, where they were incinerated and used to produce electricity. The neighborhood groups were reimbursed at a rate of $1.00 for every two tires collected.
- Tire Pile Cleanup in Pennsylvania — The Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection, with the help of county and local governments, recently completed the cleanup of three large scrap tire piles which contained a total of over 3.2 million tires. All three piles had been the source of much controversy due to the hazards they posed as a fire threat and a health threat (mosquito breeding), and their proximity to populated areas.
Scrap Tire Cleanup Guidebook: (PDF, 41pp, 6.61M, about pdf) To help state and local governments reduce the economic burdens and environmental risks associated with scrap tire piles on their landscapes, U.S. EPA Region 5 and Illinois EPA have collaborated to create the Scrap Tire Cleanup Guidebook. The guidebook brings together the experience of dozens of professionals in one resource designed to provide state and local officials with the information needed to effectively clean up scrap tire piles. The guidebook discusses starting a cleanup program, working with contractors to clean up sites, and implementing prevention programs that will reduce scrap tire dumping.
For additional information on scrap tires, visit:
Pennsylvania, Maryland, Delaware, Virginia, and West Virginia have all developed scrap tire market development programs and financial incentives for products made from recycled scrap tires see State Contacts . This page provides links to non-EPA web sites that provide additional information about Scrap Tires. You will leave the EPA.gov domain and enter another page with more information. EPA cannot attest to the accuracy of information on that non-EPA page. Providing links to a non-EPA Web site is not an endorsement of the other site or the information it contains by EPA or any of its employees. Also, be aware that the privacy protection provided on the EPA.gov domain (see Privacy and Security Notice) may not be available at the external link.
Rubber Manufacturers Association
Recycling Research Institute
Other resources include the Scrap Tire Management Council, the Tire Retread Information Bureau, and Scrap Tire News. Links to these Web sites are available through the national scrap tires Web site - list of resources.
For more information:
Mike Giuranna, Solid Waste Specialist
U.S. EPA Region 3
1650 Arch Street
Philadelphia, Pennsylvania 19103-2029
Phone: (215) 814-3298