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March 24, 2006

WASHINGTON STATE FOCUSES ON TIRES

The Washington state legislature is considering implementing recommendations made by the state’s Department of Ecology (DOE) to solve the scrap tire pile problem in the state.

To solve the growing problem of discarded tires, the state legislature directed the agency to find out where and how many tire piles were in the state. Directive ESHB 2085 called for the DOE to come up with recommendations for cleaning up the tire piles.

The DOE found roughly 5 million tires in 54 piles in 19 counties across Washington and estimates that it will take $7 million and years to clean up the piles. To fund the cleanup, the legislature authorized a $1 fee per new tire sold that started July 1.

"We found a large volume of cast-away tires and now can map them out," Cullen Stephenson, manager of Ecology’s solid-waste division, says. "Knowing what’s out there is very valuable and with this information in hand, the money collected so far from the tire fee can be made available to us to begin the cleanup work."

The tire fee will be in place for five years, but even after fee collection ends, remaining funds can be used to eliminate the problem.

The full report, containing details about tire cleanup priorities and costs, can be found at www.ecy.wa.gov/biblio/0507043.html.

STARR TIRE PILE CLEANUP CONTINUES IN PA.

The Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection (DEP) has reported that more than 158,000 tires have been removed from a tire pile in Greenwood Township, Pa.

The Pennsylvania DEP is directing the tire removal, which is being performed by businesses that disposed of tires at the site.

In April 2004, the DEP contacted more than 45 businesses that sent tires to the property requesting removal of the tires. Ten scrap tire generators hauled away more than 133,000 tires later that year.

However, 21 of the tire generators refused to remove the scrap tires they dumped at the site. In January 2005, the DEP filed a Complaint In Equity in Columbia County Court requiring that each generator to remove its share of scrap tires.

Since that legal action, eight of the 21 generators removed nearly 25,000 tires from the site. DEP currently is involved in litigation with the remaining 13 companies that are responsible for 500,000 waste tires.

In addition, Carbon Services Corp. Lehighton, Pa., received a $300,000 grant in May of 2005 to remove about 2,000 large, hard-to-dispose tires from the site. The tires, which are not suitable for conventional processing because each can weigh more than half a ton, will be baled, filled with concrete and placed off the Delaware coastline to act as an artificial reef in the Atlantic Ocean. That removal work began in February.

COLORADO COMPANIES, CITY LAUNCH GLASS RECYCLING PILOT

Fort Collins, Colo., Coors Brewing Co. and Rocky Mountain Bottle Co. have introduced a voluntary glass recycling program that asks Fort Collins residents to separate glass from their other recyclables and to bring it to the city’s recycling center.

According to a report in The Coloradoan (Fort Collins, Colo.), the pilot program is scheduled to run for 12 months and will then be evaluated.

Fort Collins Senior Environmental Planner Susie Gordon tells the paper, "We’re really working hard to recycle this stuff."

The city currently commingles containers at the curb, which can result in contaminated broken glass, which, prior to the fall of 2005, the city crushed and used as daily cover at the landfill. However, the glass has posed enough of a problem that the city has considered pulling the material from curbside collections, according to The Coloradoan.

Glass collected through the pilot program will be trucked to Golden, Colo.-based Rocky Mountain Bottle Co. at the expense of the bottle manufacturer and Coors. This should help to ensure that the bottles are recycled back into bottles as opposed to being used in other lower-value applications.

OHIO EPA SIGNS TIRE ABATEMENT CONTRACT

The Ohio Environmental Protection Agency has announced that it has contracted with a vendor that has removed close to 100,000 tires from an illegal tire disposal site in St. Johns, Ohio.

Wapakoneta resident Robert G. Keller, the property owner, has been ordered to pay a civil penalty of $2,500 and must also reimburse the state for cleanup costs.

In 2002 Keller was ordered to remove all the scrap tires from the property by March 2003 as well as to implement mosquito controls and to move the tires into proper storage piles until the cleanup was complete. When those orders were not carried out, Ohio EPA issued new orders this summer authorizing the state to perform the cleanup.

GREENMAN TECHNOLOGIES RECEIVES FILING EXTENSION

Tire recycler GreenMan Technologies Inc., based in Lynnfield, Mass., has announced that the American Stock Exchange (Amex) has granted the company an extension to regain compliance with Amex listing standards.

GreenMan Technologies received notice from Amex Jan. 5, 2006, indicating that the company was not in compliance with Amex requirements for continued listing as set forth in Sections 134 and 1101 of the Amex Company Guide with respect to GreenMan’s failure to file its annual report on Form 10-KSB for the year ended Sept. 30, 2005, with the Securities and Exchange Commission.

GreenMan had the opportunity to submit a plan of compliance to the Exchange and did so Jan. 18.

The company was notified Feb. 2 that the American Stock Exchange had accepted its compliance plan and had granted GreenMan an extension through March 20, 2006, to regain compliance with the listing standards. GreenMan will be subject to periodic review by Amex staff during the extension period.

If GreenMan fails to make progress consistent with the plan or to regain compliance with the continued listing standards by the end of the extension period, Amex may initiate delisting proceedings.

GreenMan Technologies may appeal any determination to initiate delisting proceedings.

"Our American Stock Exchange listing is very important to us and we are pleased the Exchange has accepted our plan of compliance," Chuck Coppa, GreenMan Technologies CFO says. "We intend to file our Annual Report on Form 10-KSB by the end of [February], in advance of the March 20, 2006, deadline," he adds.