New Zealand may be perceived as being a late entrant into the ELT management game. For a “western” country it has been slow to deal with its tyre arisings in a structured way.
For those whose communities are impacted by tyre dumps, the standards cannot come soon enough. Though standards for tyre storage do not provide a solution to the question of their final use.
Waikato Regional Council investigation and incident response manager Patrick Lynch says a large tyre storage site near Otorohanga highlights the need for these initiatives.
“Council monitoring of a large storage site near Otorohanga has recently determined that no more tyres can be placed there until the site can properly manage their environmental risks.
“The operator there has received a formal notice to that effect.”
And due to a lack of alternative end uses, hundreds of thousands of old tyres are being stockpiled at the Otorohanga facility.
The New Zealand Ministry for the Environment has announced it will be putting in place a national environmental standard later this year to manage the storage and stockpiling of end-of-life tyres.
All tyre storage facilities will need to be compliant with this standard.
“We know central Government is also working hard to develop solutions for how to cope with the four million end-of-life tyres that New Zealand produces annually.
Environment Minister, Nick Smith, acknowledged that the exporting of used tyres as fuel was just making a new Zealand problem someone else’s problem.
"The bulk of our end of life tyres in New Zealand right now are being exported in containers mainly to burn in power plants and cement mills," said Smith.
"It has taken some time to get the regulations, funding and innovators to find a comprehensive solution we are very close, I'm looking forward to making an announcement in the next month."
Although details have not yet been revealed, Smith did say that some £10 million would be available in grants towards making the tyre recycling concept happen in New Zealand.