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[GreenYes] New Firms, Old Tires
There are a number of technologies that use old tires in an economic and
environmentally sound manner.  There are firms that are now producing such
high grade crumb rubber that the virgin compounders are buying it and using
it as a substitute for virgin materials.  Other firms are making
construction materials out of the tire after sidewalls are removed and
surfaces are buffed. All by-products are sold back to industry. There is no
chemical conversion involved in these processes.

Burning tires in existing boilers may be relatively clean, but using tires
as a material saves far more energy than is recovered through burning. Also,
most tire burning produces electricity, which is a very inefficient use
of a
fuel as compared to its use as process steam and district heating for heat
and air conditioning.

Several of the companies involved are also very good neighbors, sharing
equity with community development organizations. ILSR has a special program
(sponsored by the National Congress for Community Economic Development, the
National Black Environmental Justice Network, and others) linking these
firms to community development organizations involved in industrial park
development for environmentally sound businesses. One goal of the
program is
to demonstrate that environmental justice efforts are not anti-industry and
business. Rather these efforts promote safe, non-polluting industry as an
alternative for a sound industrial economy.

Neil Seldman

Institute for Local Self-Reliance
2425 18th Street, NW
Washington, DC 20009
(202) 232-4108
(202) 332-0463 [fax]
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