Recognising that not all waste tyre exports are legitimate, Tyre Stewardship Australia (TSA), has asked contractors to stop sending tyres to dubious destinations.
TSA Recognises that not All Exports are Legitimate or Environmentally Sound
“A recent audit of where some of our recyclers send the tyres they collect, has revealed some red flags,” said the newly appointed Chief Executive Officer of TSA, Lina Goodman.
“Whilst it is inevitable that some used tyres will be sold overseas, we want Australian tyre recyclers and collectors to be more vigilant and responsible about where they send their product,” she said.
“Although TSA does not have the authority to regulate these markets, we do want to help our participants make informed choices – choices that are safer for the environment and society.”
The stewardship programme is led by the five leading tyre manufacturers and they are keen to find improved solutions to recycling tyres.
TSA revealed the recent audit uncovered concerning practises that included product being sold to overseas businesses with undesirable health and safety practices; product being stored in an unsafe manner, conducive of fire and other health-related concerns
TSA engaged Intertek, a global total quality assurance organisation, to assist with the verification of the downstream process of end-of-life tyres.
“Intertek is committed to a partnership with TSA in furthering the development of the scheme, to provide valuable and actionable insights into the end-of-life tyre export, distribution and processing through covering a range of crucial aspects, including distribution, environmental, health and safety, modern slavery and broader social responsibility and compliance aspects,” said Benjamin Rieck Intertek’s General Manager Australasia.
TSA cannot direct Australian recyclers to send their product to specific overseas operators, but it can revoke the membership of non-compliant participants.
“The guiding foundation of the product stewardship scheme is that all members must use only accredited TSA collectors and recyclers,” said Goodman.
“A revoked membership implies profound commercial consequences precluding offenders from doing business with other TSA accredited parties.”
“We are working hard to support these emerging markets but, in the meantime, we need to do more to help our participants find and use reputable overseas recyclers,” said Goodman.
“It’s all about creating more sustainable outcomes for Australia’s end-of-life tyres. Let’s keep them away from landfill, illegal dumping and unaccountable export markets,” she said.