Q: What can I do with my old tires? Will they be used for blasting?
A: If you have old tires or find them while you are spring cleaning, please return them to a registered Ontario Tire Stewardship (OTS) program participant. This provincewide scrap tire recycling program for on-road and off-road tires supplied into the Ontario market will convert scrap tires to 3Rs (reduce, reuse, recycle) processing and uses.
Many years ago, Canadians simply sent their tires to the landfill (some countries still have this practice), but tires take up an enormous amount of space in landfills and do not degrade easily. They hold water that can house mosquitoes, and they can trap methane when buried. Tire stockpiles are dangerous as fires may occur and can burn for months, releasing toxic fumes. Scrap tires are bulky and pose environmental and health concerns. Thanks to the ongoing efforts of the OTS program, ontariots.ca, used tires have a new lease on life.
You may return your old tires, free of charge, to a participating dealership, garage, scrap yard, City of Greater Sudbury landfill or tire company. If you have more than four tires, however, please phone first to understand your options (restrictions may apply). Companies that are registered through OTS receive various incentives or recognition for their efforts to recycle tires and there are various designations for their levels of participation. Stewards are the foundation of the Used Tires Program and include vehicle manufacturers, tire brand owners and first importers of new tires. Registered collectors will accumulate the tires delivered to them and then registered haulers will bring these tires to processors, recycled product manufacturers or another registered end-point.
While some of Greater Sudbury’s tires go to local processors for blasting mat applications, there is a wide variety of tire derived products (TDP). From the OTS website you can see many examples of these innovative and often very colourful products.
Tires can become floor mats used in weight rooms, barns, hockey arenas, doorways and playgrounds. Other examples are mouse pads, rubber components of your car’s engine, rubber mulch, truck flaps, rubber shingles and rubberized asphalt.
Thanks to EarthCare Sudbury partners BM Metals and the City of Greater Sudbury for their assistance in responding to this question. EarthCare Sudbury is a network of over 130 local businesses, organizations, and agencies that have committed to help Greater Sudbury become greener, cleaner, healthier and more sustainable.
Find out more about EarthCare Sudbury, our partners and how to get involved by visiting our website at www.greatersudbury.ca/earthcare.
Do you have a question about an environmental issue? Ask an EarthCare Expert! Submit your question online at greatersudbury.ca/earthcare, then watch for this column published in the Northern Life for an “expert” response.
Posted by Laurel Myers