Three businesses that specialize in products made from recycled tires will receive grants totaling more than $1.2 million to expand their markets and keep more of the material out of California landfills.
The Tire Incentive Program (TIP), managed by the California Department of Resources Recycling and Recovery (CalRecycle), is a competitive pilot program created to expand commercial demand for products derived from recycled tires. TIP grants are awarded to eligible manufacturers to competitively price and market their products with the goal of increasing their market share, CalRecycle says.
“When we make products out of recycled tires rather than new material, we’re not only keeping tires out of the landfill, we’re also using less energy to create those products than we would need to use to extract virgin material,” says CalRecycle Director Scott Smithline. “These innovative products are all tested for quality, and they don’t hit the market until they’re at least as high-quality as similar products made from traditional material.”
TIP grants were awarded to United Sports Surfacing of America Inc. ($294,118), U.S. Rubber Recycling ($498,116) and Van Duerr Industries Inc., dba SafePath Products Inc., ($450,355), for a total of more than $1,242,500 in funding.
Chico, California-based Van Duerr Industries Inc. doing business as SafePath Products Inc., plans to use the grant to expand its rubber molding capacity, CalRecycle says. The company uses recycled tires to make wheelchair ramps that are compliant with the Americans with Disabilities Act. Prior to obtaining the grant, the two molding companies that currently manufacture products for SafePath were concerned about being able to meet future demand.
United Sports Surfacing of America Inc., based in Orange County, California, makes rubberized sidewalks, running tracks, playground surfaces and other products. The company plans to switch its material from out-of-state rubber to recycled tires from California. It is also testing new products made from recycled tires to compete in the market against the same products currently made from virgin material, CalRecycle reports.
U.S. Rubber Recycling Inc., in San Bernardino County, recycles scrap tires into commercial flooring, sound-dampening underlayment for floors and anti-skid packing material. CalRecycle says the company now plans to add sales staff members to increase its marketing and expand its market line.
About 44 million scrap tires are generated in California each year. CalRecycle says its tire program has resulted in the diversion of about 36 million of those tires from landfills each year. The program is funded by a $1.75 tire recycling fee on each new tire sold in California. CalRecycle receives $1 of each $1.75 fee; the remainder is used for tire-related air emission programs. For more information, see CalRecycle’s Tire Recycling, Cleanup, and Enforcement Grants webpage.