We talk a lot about tires – all seasons vs. winter tires, proper inflation for fuel-efficiency, the right tread for rain – but we don’t often talk about what happens once the rubber leaves the road.
After all, it’s not like you can just toss them in the Blue Box for curb-side recycling.
The great news? It IS almost that easy, thanks to Tire Stewardship BC.
A not-for-profit society administering the province’s scrap tires for recycling program, Tire Stewardship BC collected more than 3.2 million tires in 2017! In fact, approximately 45,000 tonnes of scrap tires are collected annually.
What happens to scrap tires?
Collected tires are delivered to a processor, where they’re transformed into everything from rubber surfaces beneath play equipment to park pathways.
TSBC collects an eco fee on the sale of every new tire, and some of these fees are used to provide grants to organizations throughout the province for projects using recycled BC rubber.
In 2017, grants to 14 applicants used approximately 608,000 pounds of BC rubber, the equivalent of approximately 39,000 car tires, for playground and spray park surfaces, recreational flooring, pathways and outdoor fitness area projects.
In all, $4.5 million in grants to 85 communities have allowed for 270 projects! Here’s a sample:
• Visitors to Cultus Lake might notice the rubber crumb pathway, part of the Main Beach Beautification Project. The pathway accounted for some 20,160 pounds of recycled BC rubber, or approximately 1,310 tires!
• When the Ladner Rotary Splash Park in Delta opened last month, it did so with 2,473 pounds of recycled rubber tires underfoot – or approximately 160 tires.
• In Vernon, 9,209 pounds of recycled BC rubber – representing approximately 600 tires – were used to create the rubber surface for the widely used Polson Park Outdoor Fitness Equipment, accessible to those with mobility difficulties.
• And at the new Victoria Courthouse playground on the site of the former “Tent City,” a whopping 55,527 pounds of recycled rubber, or approximately 3,600 tires, create a cushioned play surface.
Turn in your tires, as easy as 1, 2, 3:
For consumers, turning your old tires into something brand new couldn’t be easier:
2. When purchasing new tires, don’t bring your old ones home – leave them with the retailer and TSBC will come pick them up.
3. Return to Retailers – select retailers voluntarily accept consumer tires year-round to ensure proper recycling. Visit the Recycling Council of BC’s website to find a location near you!
To learn more, visit tsbc.ca.