End-of-life management of tyres

In Europe, about 95% of End-of-Life Tyres (ELT) are recycled; in the United States the value is nearly 80%, while in Japan it is slightly higher (Source ETRMA – Annual Report 2013/2014). For years now, Pirelli has been involved in the management of ELT collaborating with leading national and international reference bodies. Pirelli is in fact active in the Tyre Industry Project (TIP) of the World Business Council for Sustainable Development (WBCSD), in the ELTs working group of ETRMA (European Tyres and Rubber Manufacturers’ Association) and, at the national and local level, it interacts directly with leading organisations active in the recovery and recycling of ELTs. As a member of TIP, Pirelli Tyre has collaborated on the publication of a report on the management of ELTs, taking a proactive approach to raising the awareness both of emerging countries and those that do not yet have a system for recycling ELTs, and to promote their recycling and reuse according to defined management models, which have already been launched successfully. The tyre is a mixture of many valuable materials that at the end of life allow two paths of recovery: recovery of material or the energy. In terms of the recovery of material, the reclaimed rubber is already reused by Pirelli in the compounds of new tyres, contributing to the reduction of the related environmental impact. Thanks to research activities in collaboration with major universities, it will be possible in the near future to improve the quality of recovered material, in terms of affinity with the other ingredients of the compounds, thus resulting in an increase in the amount of recoveries used in compounds with an additional environmental benefit.