(photo credit: Ilana Hart)
Tyrec dedicated a new NIS 60 million tire-recycling factory in Katzir’s Sahak industrial zone, next to Wadi Ara, on Tuesday.
Israelis discard an estimated 50,000 tons, or 3 million tires, a year. Until now, most of them were either interred in landfills or just dumped in open areas or on the side of the road.
The 15,000-square-meter factory will be able to process 35,000 tons, or 2 million tires a year. Israel’s only other tire-recycling facility is E&J Tire Recycling Ltd. in Ashkelon, which can handle 20,000 tons. Together, the two factories have the capacity to handle all of the used tires.
Only 6,000 tons of tires have been recycled thus far in Israel, according to Tyrec.
Tire-recycling factories reduce the tires to their component parts of rubber, fabric and steel. The rubber can be reused for a variety of purposes, including as a protective surface in playgrounds.
Other companies have been working on technologies that reduce the tires to oil and steel.
At the ribbon-cutting ceremony, Environmental Protection Minister Gilad Erdan said: “When I joined the ministry I made recycling the main priority. Tyrec’s tire-recycling factory can be a model for innovation and investment for factories the world over. But if there is no market for recycled raw materials, then the whole enterprise will stall.
“The next step for the ministry is to press the government, as the biggest manufacturer of infrastructure, to fulfill its responsibility to create a market for recycled raw materials.”
Tyrec CEO Amal Asad said: “The new factory will multiply by seven the amount of tires recycled each year and finally enable the implementation of the Tire Recycling Law. Thirty-thousand tons of raw materials that will leave Tyrec each year will enable the creation of factories for recycled materials and will transform the tire into an environmental financial resource.”
Both companies came into existence following the passage of the Tire Recycling Law in 2007. The law mandates specific increasing percentages of tires to be interred in landfills or recycled until 2013. After 2013, all tires must be recycled.
The law has two purposes: to recycle tires and to restrict the population of Asian Tiger mosquitoes, which often carry Dengue fever. The Environmental Protection Ministry found that the mosquitoes liked to breed in the stagnant water that collects in old tires rotting in landfills or by the side of roads. Some experts believe Dengue fever passed from country to country via the tires.
Tyrec’s factory began operating in January, and the company has ISO 14001 and ISO 9001 environmental certifications.
Both factories also have deals with the Tzach Orni company. Tzach Orni
makes bridge scales that can be used to weigh tire trucks and determine
the exact quantity of materials being recycled, which should encourage
companies to recycle the tires.