Council Says Bon Voyage to Old Tyres

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Council Says Bon Voyage to Old Tyres

posted 06-Dec-2018

Over a number of years, a large volume of tyres has been collecting at the Katherine Waste Management Facility. Old tyres can pose a threat to the environment and to human health. They provide breeding grounds for mosquitos and can release toxins into the environment.  So what’s the solution?


Historically, tyre recycling has been a costly exercise and once recycled, end use markets were scarce.  But, bringing these tyres to the recycling market has been a priority for Katherine Town Council and the recent developments in the scrap tyre market has now made this priority a feasible reality.  


Yesterday, Stage 1 of our Tyre Recycling Project commenced, with tyre recycler “Tyrecycle” loading up around 20 tonne of Katherine’s legacy tyres for a trip to Adelaide for recycling.  By the end of Stage 1, approximately 80 tonnes of tyres will have been removed from the Waste Management Facility.  That’s well over 50 percent of the tyres currently present at the facility.


The recycling process starts with the shredding of the tyres. The metal is removed and recycled and the rubber is transformed into granules, which is then put to use in playgrounds, sporting facilities and on road surfaces.  It is also used as a fuel additive by the cement, paper and steel industries. Their highly controlled combustion processes remove hazards associated with an open tyre fire and the rubber acts as a substitute for fossil fuels, thereby reducing greenhouse gases.


Recycling of tyres is still an expensive business and Katherine Town Council recently updated fees and charges for dumping of tyres at the Waste Management Facility, to assist in recouping some of the recycling costs.  Council is continuously looking for opportunities to reduce these costs while at the same time supporting local markets.