Virtuous recycling of end-of-life tyres by Ecopneus
Ecopneus is a non-profit consortium company created by the major tyre manufacturers in Italy in order to track, collect and process end-of-life tyres (ELT). It currently handles 70% of the ELTs in Italy.
Ecopneus is responsible for a virtuous supply chain giving new purpose to ELTs. It ensures that approximately 250 000 tonnes of ELTs are collected and processed each year in order to obtain mainly granules and recycled rubber powder. These materials are used to build playgrounds, sport floorings, horse riding surfaces, acoustic insulation, asphalt, etc.
As a guarantee for manufacturers who use this material for their products and for end-users of these products, Ecopneus has introduced a certification for rubber granules and powder.
In certain cases the use of rubber recycled from ELTs instead of virgin rubber allows better performances from a chemical and mechanical point of view.
In addition to ELT management, Ecopneus is strongly committed to promoting the uses of recycled rubber, the market of applications, the qualification of the companies of the chain, as well as information and awareness-raising initiatives for the creation of a “recycling culture”.
The recovery of ELTs by Ecopneus allows important environmental and financial savings. In 2017 alone:
- 365 000 tonnes of CO2eq were not released into the atmosphere,
- 354 000 tonnes of raw materials were saved,
- 1,7 million m3 of water were not consumed,
- 142 million EUR were saved in raw material imports.
These tangible benefits are also possible thanks to the work of a qualified chain, composed of about 100 companies located across Italy, which employ over 700 people.