Impressive number of auto repair shops embracing tire recycling.
According to a recent study by the Automotive Aftermarket Industry Association (AAIA), 88 percent of auto repair shops across the United States have reported that they properly recycle tires brought in by customers. Tire recycling has grown to nearly 300 million of the items annually, and the spent rubber is made into turf for the sporting industry, mulch, playground surfaces, asphalt and a number of other consumer products.
"Many people aren't aware of the widespread environmental thinking and practices in auto repair shops in the areas of recycling, disposal, and facilities management," said Rick White, executive director of the Car Care Council. "Shops have practiced sustainability for decades, and as a result, they have made huge contributions to a cleaner environment."
Tires are a particularly dangerous material that can build up in landfills. As the products break down, toxic runoff can contaminate groundwater and can actually cause air pollution. Additionally, the structure of tires also lends itself to produce a lot of standing water, which could create a breeding ground for mosquitoes which can be a great risk to public health. The study also noted that auto repair shops across the country have made strides to recycle batteries, cleaning solvents, scrap metal, used engine and oil filters and other products that could prove to be caustic in a landfill.
The research is hopeful news for the auto industry, as it proves that it is on the leading edge of recycling consumer products once they've reached the end of their lifespans. Hopefully, this is the beginning of a larger trend for the economy - to follow products from the manufacturing stage to the recycling plant. This can help to remove tons of waste from local landfills and create a greener environment.