2013 TRACS Annual Report Shows Attitude Change In The Tyre Industry

TRACS is Ireland’s leading tyre monitoring and compliance scheme. The 2013 TRACS annual report shows that membership of TRACS has increased dramatically since 2011, growing from 204 members to a current total of 511 members.  This represents a 150% increase in two years and breaks down into retailers (416), importers (69) and collectors (26), some of whom have multiple sites as part of their business.  The total number of sites registered with TRACS has also more than doubled from 300 to 680, an increase of 127%.

The report states that approximately 3 million tyres were imported into Ireland for supply in 2012, mostly car tyres.  TRACS accounted for 3 in every 4 tyres imported. Furthermore, TRACS also accounted for 9 in every 10 waste tyres collected and treated either in this country or abroad.  Retail members account for about 59% of tyres directly fitted onto vehicles, a lower proportion given the increasingly fluid and fragmented market place:  this is because there are more, and smaller, retailers fitting a varied of new and part-worn tyres.

The waste is managed in mainly two equal ways.  Almost 45% of used tyres were recycled into granulate, such as crumbed rubber which can go on to form products commonly seen in playgrounds and running tracks, while 42% were recovered as fuel, such as that used in cement kilns abroad as a replacement for fossil fuels.  The remaining 13% included various uses, such as anchors for silage pit covers.

In this regime, and under the current Regulations, ownership of the waste remains with the waste holders; which is the retailer.  Current enforcement of waste management practices is an on-going task for the local authorities, not only regarding the environmentally sound management of waste tyres by permitted waste collectors, but also on the retailers who are only allowed to stored a certain quantity of waste on their premises.  However, inEuropethe prevailing model is for importers and manufacturers to take ownership and direct responsibility for their products when they become waste, via the collection and treatment of waste tyres through the non-profit collective scheme.  This is one of the options being considered for the future.

According to TRACS director Fiacra Quinn, “TRACS is making steady and continuous progress in convincing new tyre industry players, many of them small operators to put the proper channelling of their waste tyres at the centre of their business model.  We have been attempting to communicate the message of what happens to a waste tyre to both the trade and the public and have been asking people to think about what happens to the waste. We have occasionally had to revoke memberships in the odd instance where the retailer cannot show where they sourced the tyres or what they did with the waste.”

TRACS is fully committed to challenging and changing industry behaviour for the better and calls on any still unregistered collectors of waste tyres to sign up with TRACS and to deal with their waste in an ethical and responsible manner. TRACS also urges all retailers to deal ONLY with registered and authorised waste collectors and to look for a RECOVERY CERTIFICATE as proof of authenticity.

More information including a full list of importers, manufacturers, retailers and waste collectors in Ireland who have registered with TRACS is available on the TRACS website. www.tracs.ie

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