Plan to root out waste tyres

Tyre Waste Management Plan

Tyre Waste Management Plan

Pretoria – South Africa’s new waste tyre management plan is set to support government’s targets to put the country’s economy onto a stronger job growth trajectory while meeting ambitious climate change goals, government said on Tuesday.

This follows the announcement by Minister of Water and Environmental Affairs, Edna Molewa, of the approval of a new Integrated Industry Waste Tyre Management Plan which Cabinet is hoping will go a long way in addressing South Africa’s carbon footprint while transforming the sector to benefit previously disadvantaged groups.

A Section 21 company known as REDISA won the approval to manage the country’s waste tyres estimated at over 200 000 tonnes a year.

REDISA will collect the waste tyres from all over the country, including tonnes from stock piles that are unaccounted for, for use in various recycling processes and for fuel and other energy needs.

A national centralised computer system will be set up to capture data on tyres collected and treated, money collected and spent, and jobs created.

Currently there is no proper management of waste tyres in South Africa and old tyres are being dumped at landfills, leading to serious environmental and health problems for the country.

Molewa said in about five years, government wanted this situation to have changed and for it to be illegal to dump waste tyres at any landfill in the country.

The plan also aims to create more than 15 000 jobs.

However, the bad news is that motorists may have to delve deeper into their pockets when buying a new tyre.

This is because REDISA will be imposing a levy of R2.30 per kilogram on each purchased new tyre. Tyre producers who fail to abide by the regulation may face fines of up to R100 000 and or imprisonment not exceeding three years.

Environmental Affairs Chief Director for Waste Management, Nolwazi Cobbinah, said the levy may drop depending on the amount of money that initially gets collected and the success of the initiative.

Cobbinah defended government against claims that the regulations could lead to further financial stress for consumers in an already tough economic climate. The move, she said, was necessary.

“A proportion of the money will go to research and development, including exploring new technologies that will help us deal with the challenge of waste management and addressing our climate change obligations,” she said.

The regulations will kick in on 1 February. – BuaNews