Government has decided to step up its act and address the issue of scrap tyres. But when the new waste management regulations are announced in June, consumers could be made to carry the cost of this move.

Government has decided to step up its act and address the issue of scrap tyres. But when the new waste management regulations are announced in June, consumers, could be made to carry the cost of this move.

The proposed move will force the tyre industry, and various others that use scrap tyres in their manufacturing processes, to find environmentally acceptable ways of disposing of their waste.

Consumers would probably have to foot the bill for the heavy costs associated with the industry-wide switch to cleaner waste-management solutions. A non-redeemable levy has been proposed by the tyre industry. The levy, estimated at about two percent per tyre, couldd push tyre prices up later this year.

The environmental affairs and tourism department said on Wednesday that the levy would help ensure safer handling and transportation of scrap tyres, which have proved to be a pollution and safety hazard.

The tyre industry estimated that about 20 per cent of the 95 000 tons of scrap tyres being collected annually were sold to motorists.

Last year's Arrive Alive figures showed that 53 per cent of accidents in SA were the result of tyre failure. These accidents cost the government about R14 billion a year.

Speaking to , Deputy Environmental Affairs and Tourism Minister Rejoice Mabudafhasi said that waste tyres posed serious environmental, as well as financial and health problems.

"Not only do they cause air pollution that results in health problems, but these tyres also contribute to the ever-increasing road carnage."

Joseph Matjila, the department's chief director of pollution waste management, said the problem was that scrap tyres were not easy to bury at landfill sites because the rubber resurfaced. Also, the high cost of transporting and handling the tyres was prohibiting optimal recycling.

Globally, scrap tyres are used extensively for making athletic tracks, roofing material and cement products. Mabudafhasi said government had agreed to investigate the feasibility of using similar solutions to dispose of the scrap tyres in SA.

Original article from Car