Secretary, California Environmental Protection Agency
Waste Management Board
additional copies of this publication contact:
Public Affairs Office
8800 Cal Center Drive, MS 12
WASTE or (916) 341-6300
statements and conclusions of this report are those of the
Integrated Waste Management Board. The report was made available
for public review and comment before adoption by either the
Integrated Waste Management Board or the State of California. The
State makes no warranty, expressed or implied, and assumes no
liability for the information contained in the succeeding text. Any
mention of commercial products or processes shall not be construed
as an endorsement of such products or processes.
Printed on Recycled Paper
Table of Contents
Infrastructure and Economics 5
Tire Hauler 6
Conversion Facilities 9
of the Evaluation 11
and Stockpiling Reductions Required by Law 14
and Mitigation 25
Manufacturers Programs 55
Specific Program Evaluations 59
Individual State Programs 91
This report is prepared in response to the
statutory requirements of AB 117 (Escutia), which extended the tire
fee supporting the California Tire Recycling Management Fund and
required the Board to submit to the Governor and the Legislature a
report, no later than June 30, 1999, that includes:
“A status report with respect to
waste tires in California, as well as an examination of programs
needed to provide sustainable end uses for the waste tires generated
in California and the reduction of existing waste tire stockpiles.”
AB 117 also required the Board to convene a
working group of:
“…affected parties to assist the
Board in the development of this report and any proposed
recommendations for legislation.”
In response to this legislative mandate, the Board
began a two-track process, which included researching and collecting
data regarding past tire program activities undertaken by the Board,
as well as soliciting recommendations from a stakeholder-based “Tire
Legislative Working Group” regarding future programmatic changes.
The Board is charged with overseeing recycling and
disposal issues for numerous programs—from monitoring the recycled
content of plastic trash bags to regulating compost facilities. The
total budget of the agency in 1998-99 was $83 million, with most of
the revenue generated by the integrated waste management fee charged
on landfilled municipal solid waste. In 1998-99, the Board had
approximately 432.7 personnel years assigned to it.
The IWMB is one of the six State agencies that
fall under the umbrella of the California Environmental Protection
Agency (Cal/EPA), including the Air Resources Board, the Department
of Pesticide Regulation, the State Water Resources Control Board, the
Department of Toxic Substances Control, and the Office of
Environmental Health Hazard Assessment.
AB 1843 (Brown), Chapter 35, Statutes of 1990,
requires the IWMB to:
“Reduce the landfill disposal and
stockpiling of used whole tires by 25 percent within four years of
full implementation of a statewide tire recycling program and to
recycle and reclaim used tires and used tire components to the
greatest extent possible in order to recover valuable natural
AB 1843 also provided for a $.25 per tire fee to
finance the Board’s tire management activities, which generates
approximately $5 million annually. This revenue is directed to the
Board’s Tire Recycling Management Fund and finances permitting,
enforcement, and cleanup activities, as well as market development
programs and administrative costs.
Despite the tire fund’s small size in comparison
to the Board’s $32 million Integrated Waste Management Account, the
tire program is one of the Board’s most visible and environmentally
sensitive responsibilities. The Royster facility tire fire near
Tracy in the summer of 1998, combined with the threatened sunsetting
of the tire fee on June 30, 1999, has brought the tire recycling
issue to the forefront of issues facing the Board, the Governor, and
the Board divides the tire program into two components:
Permitting, enforcement, and
From the inception of the program in the early
1990s, program resources have totaled $34.1 million, with the Board
expending $29.7 million to date on cleanup, enforcement, market
development activities, and administration. Historically, resources
have been relatively evenly divided between the two program
components, with market development expenditures since 1990-91
totaling $11.3 million and permitting and enforcement expenditures
totaling $13.2 million.
Testimony received during the April 29, 1999
Board meeting stressed the immediate need to alleviate the
environmental dangers posed by the numerous illegal tire piles within
the state. Further, testimony before the Board and written inputs
from several sources revealed the original draft report was deficient
in addressing source reduction, the top of the waste reduction
hierarchy. Accordingly, this report contains a highly ambitious
two-year program to expedite the removal of illegal tire piles and an
expansion of the original staff recommendations to more adequately
address source reduction. The sample budget contained in Attachment
1 reflects the optimization of programs and the starting point for
discussions on program fiscal requirements.
The evaluation of current Board programs and
analysis of successful programs from other states lead to the
conclusion that the current California waste tire program has most of
the essential elements to be successful. While the correct mix of
program elements are in place, there is insufficient funding to use
these elements to the best advantage. Recommendations within this
report are designed to improve what we already have, rather than
impose any radical changes. Changes needed in program elements are
Accelerate the remediation of the
larger illegal waste tire piles.
Improve enforcement through
greater participation by local authorities.
Expand market development
important, increase funding to support the overall program.
Cleanup of Large Illegal Tire Piles
To reduce the danger from uncontrolled burning of
large illegal tire piles, this report recommends establishing the
goal to eliminate all known major (over 5,000 tires) illegal waste
tire piles within two years. Additionally, the report recommends
reimbursing local governments for the cleanup of minor illegal tire
piles (500-5,000 tires) within their jurisdictions.
Lack of statutory authority has resulted in delays
in taking actions against those responsible for illegal tire piles.
Stakeholders placed increased, timely enforcement at the top of their
list of concerns. This report recommends statute modification to
give the Board access and enforcement authority currently possessed
by comparable regulatory agencies.
Early detection and local government participation
are the keys to an effective enforcement program. Accordingly, this
report recommends developing a program to encourage greater
participation by local governments in a State-funded local
enforcement program. This voluntary program would establish the goal
of conducting an annual inspection of waste tire generators (up to
10,000 statewide) through the use of the Local Enforcement Agencies
(LEA) and reimburse the LEAs for the cost of the inspections.
Market Development and Business Retention
Although illegal tire pile cleanup and regulatory
enforcement are extremely important, the root cause of the tire
problem is lack of markets to support the statutory hierarchy of
scrap tire use. As long as there are insufficient markets for the
tires generated, scrap tires will go to landfills, the lowest level
on the hierarchy, or illegal disposal. This means that any long-term
solution has to address the creation of sustainable markets to absorb
the tires generated annually.
Accordingly, this report recommends market
development efforts also be increased, using the statutory hierarchy,
to develop industries that can put the waste tires to productive use.
While there are developing markets for crumb rubber products
(rubberized asphalt and molded rubber products) and tire shreds
(lightweight road fill), the reality is that the primary options
available into the immediate future are productive use as fuel for
energy generation or cement production or, as a final option,
To develop the businesses that can survive in the
open marketplace, and to sustain those that are currently diverting
tires, this report recommends an aggressive market development and
business retention program and recommends specific goals for the
major elements of the market development program.
Recognizing that the best way to control waste
tires is to prevent or reduce their generation in the first place,
this report recommends a comprehensive public information program to
encourage the purchase of longer lasting tires. The program would
also educate the public on the environmental hazards presented by
illegal disposal of scrap tires. The report further recommends the
creation of a partnership with the tire manufacturing industry to
conduct additional research on how to increase recycled content in
the production of new tires.
The Tire Fee
With a $.25 assessment on the purchase of each new
tire, the $5 million collected annually makes California’s one of
the lowest funded waste tire programs in the nation. As a
comparison, Florida ($12 million program) and Illinois ($8 million
program) jointly produce approximately the same number of new scrap
tires annually as California. One impact of the minimal funding has
been the relatively slow pace in cleaning up illegal tire piles,
resulting in greater public exposure to the dangers associated with
large tire fires. Since 1995, the Board has remediated approximately
10 million tires from illegal tire piles. In May of 1996,
approximately 1.5 million tires burned at the Choperena waste tire
site and 7 million tires are being consumed at the fire currently
burning at the Royster facility (the fire has been burning for over
10 months). These two fires alone have consumed almost as many as
have been remediated by the Board since the inception of the cleanup
This two-year objective to clean up major scrap
tire piles, increase enforcement at the local level, and increase
market development can only be accomplished through increasing
funding for the tire program. Appendix 1 lays out the need for an
optimum $40 million per year overall tire program with adequate
funding to address the deficient areas.
Section 1, Infrastructure and Economics of
California Waste Tires, contains an overview of how waste tires
flow through the California commercial infrastructure.
There is a large number of scrap
tire generators (tire dealers, dismantlers, etc.).
Beyond the initial generators,
profit margins are relatively small.
The tire hauler market is
dominated by two large companies, however, there are many small
companies (900 permitted with 8,000 vehicles).
surplus of tires allows most processors and many end users to charge
to accept scrap tires (tipping fees).
Section 2, Evaluation of the Board Waste Tire
Program, contains analysis of current Board programs.
Information and analysis for this section was primarily provided by
an independent contractor, VITETTA, working in partnership with
the Board staff.
A contractor was used to assist staff with
this portion of the report in order to provide objective analysis of
the programs as well as help meet the short timelines required for
the report. Many of the findings in this evaluation directly relate
to internal Board procedures and policies and will be addressed
through a rigorous review by the Board.
Approximately half the scrap tires
generated and imported annually are landfilled, stored, or disposed
Flow of scrap tires within the
free market is difficult to track and there are insufficient
reliable data on the movement of tires, numbers of tires in illegal
tire piles and location of many of the smaller tire piles.
The Board does not have
jurisdiction over many of the factors affecting the value of scrap
The Board staff is committed to
finding and implementing long-term solutions.
A majority of the tire recycling
grants are ranked as “excellent” or “good.”
There is a need to focus efforts
on the use of rubberized asphalt concrete (RAC).
The current tire manifest program
does not provide a method to track the flow of tires from generation
to end use.
Local government cleanup matching
grants are a cost-effective method of performing small to
The Board-sponsored fire safety
training program has been effective but needs to be updated.
The work of the “Rubber Pavement
Team” (IWMB, Caltrans, and Rubber Pavements Association) should be
continued in order to increase the use of RAC by Caltrans.
A Northern California RAC
Technology Center should be established.
Department of General Services (DGS) has not purchased any retreaded
automobile tires because none are on the market that meet
Section 3, Recommendations, is the core of
the report. This section lays out recommended actions to improve the
overall tire program and is organized according to three major
functions: (1) enforcement and mitigation, (2) permitting, and (3)
Revise the amount and collection
point of the tire fee.
Create a permanent, voluntary,
noncompetitive grant program to reimburse local jurisdictions for
Initiate an aggressive two-year
program to eliminate all known, illegal, major tire piles.
Modify the current tire manifest
system to better track the flow of tires.
Change statute to release the
Board from trespass liability and augment the ability to convert
administrative penalty into a civil judgement.
Change definitions in statute to
make permitting process less demanding on facilities that present
minimal environmental risks.
Within one year, Caltrans must
develop guidelines on use of RAC.
Section 4, Benchmark Study, compares the
California waste tire program with those of Wisconsin, Florida,
Illinois, and Arizona. This section develops lessons learned in
other states that can be applied to our program.
California has program elements
that have been successful in other states.
Other states have greater relative
funding per tire.
Energy conversion is the most
prevalent beneficial use of scrap tires.
Infrastructure and Economics of Waste Tire Flow
To understand the issues relating to waste tires,
it is necessary to have a basic understanding of the “flow” of
waste tires through the system, which are the primary stakeholders,
and the economics of the waste tire business. This section addresses
The general flow of waste tires begins with the
tire dealer. When a customer purchases new tires the dealer removes
the old tires and charges the customer a fee for disposal. If a tire
left with the dealer still has significant useful life, the dealer
resells the tire as a “used tire” at the prevailing market rate.
The tires with no remaining useful life must be disposed of in some
manner. The most common means of disposal for the dealer are to haul
the tires directly to a landfill or contract with a waste tire hauler
for periodic removal. The economics of the transactions vary from
time and location; but, as a representative sample, in the Los
Angeles area a dealer charges approximately $1.50 per tire to the
customer for disposal. A dealer that self-hauls the whole tire to
the Azusa landfill pays $.42 for disposal. If the dealer hires a
waste tire hauler to carry off the tire, the cost is around $.65 per
tire for removal from the business site.
The landfill is the market of last resort for a
waste tire; however, environmental groups question the wisdom of
allowing landfilling. By statute, whole tires cannot be placed in
California landfills so they must be processed (cut apart) in some
manner before being deposited. By national standards, California has
very low landfill disposal costs and critics claim that these low
costs act as a barrier to the development of alternative markets. On
the other hand, a lower landfill fee acts to reduce illegal dumping.
In 1998, Azusa Landfill accepted more tires than
any other landfill in California with 10 to 12 million tires being
deposited. Azusa Landfill charges up to $.42 per whole tire and this
includes the cost of shredding the tire prior to disposal. Haulers
that deliver large volumes of altered tires may have special
contractual arrangements with lower tipping fees. Azusa is unique in
that it is a tire monofill and does not accept standard municipal
solid waste. On a case-by-case basis, other landfills do accept
scrap tires with variable disposal costs (tipping fees).
Alternative daily cover has been a popular program
for some communities as tires used for alternative daily cover are
diverted at very low costs and also count toward the mandated waste
diversion goals of AB 939. There is concern that this low-cost
diversion can adversely affect the diversion of tires from more
desirable uses as well as potentially cause fire dangers.
Waste Tire Hauler
The waste tire hauler is the glue that connects
the different elements of the infrastructure. The hauler picks up
the tires from the tire dealers and has the option of taking them to
several legal destinations. Landfills are available for all
processed waste tires. The hauler can also contract with a crumb
rubber manufacturer to accept the waste tires. In some locations
there are processors that accept tires and a few enterprising haulers
have contracts with energy conversion (cement kilns and co-generation
A very significant point is that the hauler must
pay the recipient of the tires to take them and the hauler’s profit
is the difference between what the dealer pays for removal and what
the end user charges to take the tires. The “per tire” numbers
in the figure above are representative of costs in the Los Angeles
area during January 1999. These costs vary throughout the state due
to many factors (contractual arrangements, time of year, demand for
tire shreds or crumb rubber, etc.) and are presented to give the
reader a feel for the variations in the different options.
One dominant factor in determining where the
hauler takes the tire is transportation distance. The low profit
margin per tire dictates that, due to transportation costs, a nearby
more costly market may be more desirable than a distant less
expensive market. Also, there are more tires than the current market
can absorb, so the hauler may have no option other than the landfill.
There are currently about 8,000 waste tire hauling
vehicles registered with the IWMB. While the 900 waste tire hauler
companies vary in size from one pick-up truck to a fleet of
specialized vehicles, two companies, Lakin Tire of California and
Oxford, dominate the market and transport about half of all waste
tires in the state.
Because of the market conditions (low profit
margins, limited legitimate end markets, and potentially expensive
long hauling distances to legal end markets) some unscrupulous
haulers have deposited their waste tire loads into illegal piles with
low tipping fees, dumped them along roads, or created illegal piles
on their own property. To track the flow of tires to ensure they go
to legal facilities, the State has imposed a manifest system where
the waste tire generators, the haulers, and end users must
Processing facilities usually receive mixed loads
of discarded tires. They separate out those that are reusable, and
process those that are not suitable for further use as tires. There
is a relatively high profit margin in selling used tires to local
dealers or exporting them, primarily to Mexico. Again, dollar
numbers in the figures are representative and actual numbers may vary
according to size of tires, availability of markets, etc.
Processed tires (tire shreds) are sold to
cogeneration facilities for use as supplemental fuel or, potentially,
as fill material for highway construction. Processing facilities
gain revenue from the input of waste tires (tipping fee) and sell
their end products. Shredding tires requires investment in heavy
equipment and the high use of energy. The revenue stream comes from
tipping fees and the sale of end products. Tipping fees must compete
with landfill tipping fees and the end products must compete with low
cost commodities (coal or gravel). For these reasons profit margins
Like the processor, the manufacturer receives
tires from the hauler for a tipping fee. The manufacturer reduces
the tire to a fine powder through either a freezing process or by
shredding and grinding. The main product of the manufacturer is
crumb rubber, a powdery material that can be used for molded products
such as playground mats, soaker hoses and computer mouse pads.
Crumb rubber can also be mixed with asphalt during
paving projects to form a material called rubberized asphalt concrete
(RAC) which has proven to be a good surfacing material for roads.
Board programs have encouraged the increased use of RAC and the
development of markets for molded rubber products such as playground
mats and wheelchair ramps, as this represents the largest profit end
use of scrap tires.
Most cement kilns and cogeneration facilities that
burn coal are able to modify their combustion processes to accept
tires and/or tire shreds. The more modern cement plants are able to
burn whole tires and receive tires directly from contract haulers.
Because there is no processing of tires required and there is a glut
of tires to be diverted, the kilns receive a tipping fee for
consuming the tires. With the cogeneration facilities, the picture
is somewhat different in that the combustion processes require the
tires to be shreded prior to burning. Because of the required
processing, the co-generation facilities pay the processors for the
Following the national trend, energy recovery
currently represents the single largest market for scrap tires.
Because of environmental concerns, tire-burning facilities have come
under especially close scrutiny during the environmental permitting
2. Program Evaluation
Scope of the Evaluation
For this study, the contractor, VITETTA, focused
generally on the effect that Board market development and
permitting/enforcement programs have had on the flow of tires,
Increasing the commodity value of
tires (or those tires put to “productive end use”).
Trends regarding landfilling and
stockpiling tires (legal and illegal).
of stockpiles (legal and illegal).
Elements reviewed include:
and minor waste tire facility permits.
tire facility regulations.
Government Cleanup Matching Grant Program.
government Enforcement Grant Program.
Fire safety training efforts.
asphalt concrete (RAC) programs.
use by Caltrans.
Los Angeles RAC Technology Center.
Recycling Grant Program.
Agency Buy Recycled Program (specifically relating to the purchase
of tire-derived products).
Public education programs.
In 1997, there were approximately 30 million “new”
scrap tires produced in California. Additionally, the Board
estimates that currently there are approximately 15 million tires
stockpiled across the state. Each year, the annual production of
“new” scrap tires appears to be increasing by approximately
The two-tiered challenge this situation creates
was highlighted by the Scrap Tire Management Council in 1997:
“All parties involved in scrap tire
management understand that there are actually two separate but
interrelated aspects to sound scrap tire management. The first
aspect is dealing with the newly generated scrap tires, the 266
million or so…created [in the nation] by the normal process of use
The second problem is dealing with the
legal and illegal stockpiles of tires which are the residue of past
(and some current) methods of handling scrap tires.”
Of the end uses currently available in California,
the Board estimated that in 1997, transformation utilized the
greatest proportion of scrap tires—nearly 10.5 million tires were
used in cement kilns or energy recovery facilities—almost 30
percent of the state’s annual flow. Board statistics indicate that
landfilling and stockpiling consumed more than 16.4 million tires.
It should be noted that different sources provide slightly different
However, it is clear that the number of new tires
produced is increasing, the number of scrap tires imported continues
to increase and the number of tires put to productive end use has
increased since the inception of the program.
Table 2-1: Scrap Tire Uses in
Waste tires produced
annually in California (estimated)
rate (estimated by
Waste tires imported
Waste tires exported
(includes used tires and retreadable casings)
(legal and illegal)
In 1990 (before State
tire program was initiated) (estimated)
In 1998 (estimated)
uses (unless noted,
all tires are “new” waste tires)
Landfilled, stored or
(production of electricity from waste tires)
5.7 million -
million legacy tires
Crumb for road
construction, reuse/retread, manufacturing of other recycled
All figures are for 1997-98
unless otherwise noted.
*Recycling rate equals
tires used as TDF in cement kilns and electricity generation,
reused/retreaded, made into crumb for a specific end use, minus
legacy tires used to produce electricity and the 3.3 million
imported tires (12.1 million/30 million).
When a tire on a vehicle becomes a “scrap”
tire (no longer suitable for its original intended use), there are a
number of options available, as detailed in Table 2-2, below.
2-2: Scrap Tire Use Options
(productive end use)
legal or illegal waste tire facility)
on legal stockpile
on illegal stockpile
from illegal to legal pile
from stockpile to disposal
from legal stockpile and put to “productive end use”
from illegal stockpile and put to “productive end use”
to legal stockpile
to illegal stockpile
to “productive end use”
For the purpose of this
study, “productive end use” and “reuse” include all uses
except landfilling, monofilling, and stockpiling. Examples of reuse
as used in this study include tire-derived fuel, crumb for use in
product manufacturing, and use of crumb in rubberized asphalt
The majority of the “new” scrap tires in this
state are directed toward landfilling or stockpiling. One of the
goals of the Board’s waste tire program has been to move more tires
from disposal and stockpiling to productive end use.
There are unique challenges associated with
remediating stockpiled tires versus ensuring that “new” scrap
tires enter the commodity stream. Stockpiled tires are generally
exposed to the elements and therefore can be dried out, dirty or
contain contaminants, such as vectors or chemicals. This means that
the longer they remain stockpiled, the less economic value they
retain. Therefore, the challenge with “new” scrap tires is
ensuring their entry into the commodity market before they are
stockpiled and lose value.
2-3: Defining the Scrap Tire Challenge
tire (in legal
or illegal waste tire facility)
(est. 15 million)
Difficult to identify
permitted and unpermitted waste tire facility pile location and
Piles tend to be dynamic
rather than static in number of tires present at any one time
Enforcement of waste tire
facilities necessary to ensure compliance
Control of vectors and
Annual estimation of
Condition of the tire,
including degree of contamination and suitability for end use
processing costs, depending on degree of contamination
incurred by moving tire to site where it will be disposed or
Low landfilling tip fees
compared to productive end uses
Changing market value of
Legal and illegal
stockpiles grow by amount of tires in “new” scrap flow that
are not diverted to productive end use
scrap tire (30
Difficult to monitor
Enforcement of tire
retailer facilities necessary to ensure compliance
Small piles may be created
as a result of consumers wishing to avoid the fee
“Capturing” new scrap
tire before it is stockpiled, contaminated and loses value
incurred by moving tire to site where it will be disposed or
Low landfilling tip fees
compared to productive end uses
Changing market value of
established goal is to decrease the amount of tires going to
landfills and stockpiles by 25 percent. Achieving that goal means
that the Board must decrease the number of scrap tires going to
landfills or stockpiles and increase the number of tires put to
productive end use.
Of the 30 million “new” scrap tires produced
in 1997, diversion programs succeeded in increasing the productive
end use of scrap tires—from 9.2 million in 1990 to 24.2 million in
1997 (see Table 2-4). Additionally, existing legacy tire piles have
been reduced from 45 million to 15 million.
However, the dynamic, two-tiered nature of the
tire challenge means tires that are not recycled or reused end up in
stockpiles or landfills. In other words, there are currently 15
million stockpiled tires in need of remediation and annually there
are more than 16 million tires stockpiled or landfilled that could be
put to productive end use.
Landfilling and Stockpiling Reductions Required
As stated previously, AB 1843 requires the Board
to reduce the landfill disposal and stockpiling of used whole tires
by 25 percent within four years of full implementation of a statewide
tire recycling program. Additionally, statute requires the Board to
recycle and reclaim used tires and used tire components to the
“greatest extent possible.”
Since 1990, landfilling and stockpiling of “new”
scrap tires has been reduced 25 percent, from 66 percent in 1990
before the program began, to 40 percent in 1997 (figures were not
available for 1998). Legacy piles have been reduced by 67 percent,
from 45 million tires stockpiled when the program began in 1990 to 15
million tires stockpiled today.
Table 2-4: California’s Tire Flow
generation (Board est.)
renewable scrap tire flow
combusted imports (est.)
tires put to other productive end uses
of new scrap tire flow stockpiled or landfilled
of new scrap tire flow put to productive end use
All figures are in millions
except where otherwise indicated.
Tires diverted determined
by the sum of reused, retreaded, exported, combusted for energy
production (including all imported tires).
It is unclear from the data
examined whether the tires put to productive end uses includes tires
from legacy piles—data regarding this is inconsistent.
Statute also requires
the Board to recycle and reuse scrap tires to the greatest extent
possible. Based on Table 2-4, it appears that the percentage of
tires put to a productive end use increased from 1990 to 1993, then
leveled off at approximately 60 percent from 1994 through 1997.
Finding #1: The Board is meeting the landfill and
stockpile reduction requirements in statute.
Landfilling and stockpiling (combined) have
decreased from 66 percent of the “new” scrap tire stream in 1990
to 39 percent in 1997. Additionally, based on the Board’s own
figures, legacy piles decreased by 67 percent, from 45 million tires
stockpiled in 1990 to 15 million stockpiled today. From these
figures, the Board’s tire program has met a portion of the
The statute also requires that tires be recycled
to “the greatest extent possible.” It is not possible at this
time to determine whether the Board has met this nonspecific and less
measurable statutory requirement. However, VITETTA determined that
productive end uses have increased 27 percent from 1990 to 1997.
Finding #2: The Board is now faced with three
Having reduced the amount of landfilled and
stockpiled tires by 25 percent and increased the number of tires put
to productive end use by 27 percent, the Board is now faced with
Remediating the 15 million
stockpiled tires that are currently “on the ground” in the
Increasing the rate of productive
end use for scrap tires, pursuant to the guidance of the statute and
equal to new scrap tire annual flow.
Preventing new stockpiles from
accumulating by enforcing the law and regulations regarding scrap
Finding #3: Flow of scrap tires within the free
market is difficult to measure and track.
The flow of scrap tires into, out of and within
the free market in California is extremely difficult and costly for
the Board to track for two reasons:
The mobility of the
commodity—tires can be transported relatively easily which makes
it difficult to track the eventual end use of each individual tire.
The activities of the industry
players are governed by the free market (including the value of
tires on an interstate, intrastate, and national basis) meaning the
Board has limited ability to intervene and affect the flow of tires
towards disposal or productive end use.
Additionally, tire flow figures, including “new”
scrap tires generated, disposed, recycled, imported and exported are
estimated by the Board based on information provided by processors,
tire haulers and others involved in the market and may not accurately
reflect the activities of the industry. All of these factors make it
difficult to accurately track the Board’s impact on the flow of
tires towards disposal or productive end use.
Finding #4: Average cost of State-funded cleanups
is $.54 per tire, median cost is $1.27.
The average cost of State-funded cleanups is $.54
per tire. However, that figure is heavily weighted due to the
economies experienced in the largest cleanup projects. The median
figure of $1.27 per tire is likely more illustrative of the “typical”
cost of State-funded cleanups.
Finding #5: Current tire fee does not cover cost
of least expensive cleanup effort.
The current $.25 per tire fee does not cover the
least expensive cleanup effort—State-funded cleanup at $.54 per
tire. Enforcement, surveillance and compliance activities cost
significantly more per tire; thus, the current tire fee is
insufficient to cover these activities. Further, the larger truck
and off-road vehicle tires create the greatest disposal challenges,
yet do not contribute to the fund.
Finding #6: Cleanup costs increase as size of
For piles between one and 2.5 million tires, the
average cost of cleanup per tire is $.48. Since most of the largest
piles in the state have been cleaned up, the Board should expect that
marginal cleanup costs will increase as the cleanup program focuses
on medium and smaller piles, which are more decentralized across the
Table 2-5: Cleanup cost by
Finding #7: There is
no long-term strategic plan for the tire program.
The Board and staff have undertaken several
efforts to set long-term program goals and priorities and define a
program mission statement. In 1991, the Office of Environmental
Protection issued a scrap tire policy proposal, which recommended
that Board staff and other environmental agency staff draft a
comprehensive agency work plan to deal with the state’s tire
challenges. In 1995, the Board attempted to devise a long-term plan
for certain aspects of the tire program. Despite these repeated
efforts to develop a long-term strategic plan for the tire program,
there is currently no plan in place.
In the absence of a long-term strategic plan, the
Board continues to regulate, monitor, and involve itself in the tire
market without specific long-term or short-term goals. This results
in inconsistency in program content, policy implementation and
program evaluation, making it difficult for the Board to measure the
impact of tire programs against specific benchmarks. It also hinders
future efforts to re-examine less successful programs or enhance
Finding #8: California’s tire challenge is
The Board is faced with two challenges:
The annually renewable flow of 30
million tires that are at the end of their value as passenger tires.
The proper disposal or recycling
of the approximately 15 million tires that are estimated by the
Board to be in legacy piles throughout the state.
This dual challenge calls for different solutions:
scrap tires from being stockpiled or landfilled requires
intervention while the tire still has useful properties and is not
contaminated, which increases processing costs.
Finding and cleaning up stockpiled
tires which may have decreased in value.
Finding #9: Efforts must be expanded to reduce
The generation and importation of tires created a
flow of approximately 34 million scrap tires in California last year.
If it is assumed that an estimated 17 million of those tires will be
put to some productive end use, there still remains approximately 17
million tires added to the growing stockpiles, landfills, or
monofills. Existing program efforts will need to be expanded if this
number is to be reduced.
Finding #10: There are diverse market and
regulatory forces outside the Board’s control.
The Board does not have jurisdiction over many of
the market or regulatory forces affecting the value of scrap tires,
including the following:
Tire design is
determined by tire manufacturers in response to the demands of the
tire-purchasing public; the life span of a tire should be expected
to continue to increase to 90,000 and 120,000 miles per tire and
beyond. This should stabilize or reduce the number of tires
generated in relation to the number of cars. However, it keeps the
cost of processing scrap tires high.
Environmental concerns stem from
on-going differences of opinion regarding the amount and types of
emissions created by transformation and use of tire-derived fuel.
This may reduce the number of options available for productive end
The Board has little legal
jurisdiction over transformation facilities. Air quality permitting
is handled by local air districts with input from the State Air
Resources Board. Local governments have jurisdiction over facility
siting issues and traffic flows to and from the facilities. The
Board is simply an “interested party” in relation to the impact
that these regulatory agencies have on the siting and operation of
transformation facilities. However, any of these variables can
effect the availability of productive end uses.
The Energy Commission, the Public
Utilities Commission, and local utilities govern energy policies,
which affect the cost of energy. The world supply of oil also
affects the price of energy. Changes in these variables affect the
marketability of scrap tires.
Programs outside of this state may
encourage haulers to import tires into California, increasing the
number of scrap tires in the state.
Therefore, the Board is working within an
environment where it has little direct control over the number, price
or value of scrap tires.
Finding #11: The Board’s internal environment
The Board and staff also work within a dynamic
political environment. During each year’s budget process, the
Board requests that staff makes recommendations regarding program
priorities and funding for those priorities. Staff must respond with
a tactical plan that changes annually based on:
Advances in tire recycling and
Priorities of the Governor, the
Legislature, and the Board.
Political influence from both
government and the industry.
Additionally, the governance structure of the
Board has resulted in changing program priorities in the absence of a
Finding #12: Board staff is committed to
VITETTA has found that the Board staff is
committed to finding and implementing long-term solutions to
California’s waste tire pile challenge. Despite the recent tire
fire at Royster, significant organizational challenges and rapidly
changing program priorities, Board staff members maintain enthusiasm
for the tire program and its projects.
Finding #13: Program accountability is
The Board tire program is separated by task rather
than program. Business development activities related to tires are
initiated and supervised by the Waste Prevention and Market
Development Division; tire site permitting and cleanup are overseen
by the Permitting and Enforcement Division. Legal staff handle
issues related to access to illegal piles and prosecution for
violations of the Public Resources Code. There is no centrally
responsible party—short of the Board Executive Director—for the
tire program. This decentralization can decrease accountability for
program and project outcomes.
Finding #14: Long-term impacts are difficult to
VITETTA was able to measure the short-term impacts
of a number of the Board’s tire programs on increasing the
commodity value of scrap tires and remediating stockpiles.
However, across the spectrum of programs examined,
it was difficult to measure long-term impacts (and, in some cases,
short-term impacts) of many of the elements of the tire program for
one or more of the following reasons:
The programs are relatively new
and, therefore, the program data is incomplete. In the case of
local government enforcement grants, 1996-97 was the first year of
the program. Therefore, there was limited data available to review
The program goals were
established but were not tracked. For example, in 1997, the Los
Angeles RAC Technology Center established evaluation criteria.
However, while Center staff is tracking some information, they are
not tracking program outcomes or performance elements that would
help determine whether they are meeting the goals established in
Program data related to
performance or program outcomes is not being tracked. In many
cases, staff is tracking different types of information for numerous
reasons, but was not specifically tracking the program data required
to determine program performance. In other cases, the management
information systems used hindered the ability of staff to provide
information. For example, in the case of the tire hauler program,
the database used did not track historical data before 1997. Other
data collection efforts by staff involve budget and financial
reports that do not track program outcomes.
Finding #15: Data regarding illegal waste tire
facilities, including location and number of tires at the facility,
is not collected in a consistent or systematic fashion.
The data on the location of illegal waste tire
facilities is fragmented, and not collected in a consistent or
systematic fashion. This prohibits the Board from accurately
tracking illegal piles and taking enforcement action, as well as
assessing success in remediating illegal sites.
Finding #16: Data regarding number of tires at
permitted and unpermitted minor and major waste tire facilities is
not readily available.
The Board cannot easily provide data regarding the
number of tires at permitted or unpermitted minor and major waste
tire facilities. This inhibits the Board’s ability to track the
results of its illegal waste tire facility enforcement efforts and
also makes it difficult to determine the actual number of tires
legally and illegally stockpiled in the state.
Finding #17: The majority of tire recycling
grants are ranked as “excellent” or “good.”
For the years 1992-93 through 1994-95 (years for
which final grant reports are available), VITETTA ranked local
government, business development and innovative research grants based
on criteria including goal achievement, use of cleaned up tires and
future marketability of products. Based on this ranking, the
majority of the grants were either ranked as “excellent” or
Finding #18: Costs of local government amnesty
day cleanups are consistent with costs of other cleanup programs.
From 1992-93 to 1994-95, approximately 438,253
tires were collected as a result of Local Government Amnesty Grants
from the Tire Recycling Grant Program.
2-6: Comparison of cleanup costs across cleanup programs
cost per tire
Local government amnesty
(funded by the Tire Recycling Grant Program)
Local government cleanup
The average cost to remediate a tire in this
program was $1.82. This figure is approximately $.54 per tire above
the median cost for State-funded cleanups. However, this higher cost
is consistent with the $2.29 average per tire cost for State-funded
cleanups of piles 25,000 tires or less. It is also a reasonable
figure compared to the average cost of remediation under the Local
Government Cleanup Matching Grant Program and State-funded cleanups.
Finding #19: There is a limited benefit of
The Board currently administers three one-time
grants to local governments:
Tire Recycling Grants (mainly
amnesty days and crumb rubber product procurement cost-offsetting)
Cleanup Matching Grants
These programs are effective for one-time
purposes. For example, amnesty day programs provide a
cost-effective, one-time opportunity for local governments to clean
up smaller, decentralized piles. However, ongoing programs (i.e.,
surveillance and tire retailer education) may not be as effective if
funded on a one-time grant basis.
Finding #20: Efforts to use rubberized asphalt
concrete (RAC) are fragmented and inconsistent
RAC is the second largest potential use for scrap
tires in the state, behind transformation. Current efforts to
increase RAC are divided between Caltrans and local agencies.
Efforts to promote the use of RAC are divided between the Rubber
Pavement Team’s (IWMB, Caltrans and the Rubber Pavements
Association) efforts, Tire Recycling Grant program allocations and
the LA RAC Technology Center at the local level.
Use of this approach is fragmented regionally and
requires a “RAC champion” within each agency. Therefore, the
current ability to maintain a consistent focus on increasing RAC
usage is limited.
Finding #21: According to VITETTA’s five-state
benchmark study, California’s tire challenge—both new tire flow
and stockpiled tires—is significantly larger than any other state
California’s 30 million annual scrap tire flow
is approximately 30 percent larger than Florida’s—the second
largest scrap tire-producing state in the nation. Since 1990,
California has remediated approximately 30 million stockpiled tires;
all four comparative states combined have remediated approximately 38
California’s program generates $5 million
annually—less than both Florida ($12 million) and Illinois ($8
million). Together, Illinois and Florida annually produce
approximately the same number of new scrap tires as California.
The scale of California’s tire challenge—both
new flow and stockpiles—is unparalleled in the nation. However,
the results of California’s Tire Program achieved within the $5
million annual budget are significant in comparison to the budgets
and challenges faced by the four comparative states.
California generates more scrap tires than any
other state yet its program ranks at the bottom in funding. With $.25
assessment at the purchase of a new tire, the $5 million collected
annually makes California’s one of the lowest funded waste tire
programs in the nation. As a comparison, Florida ($12 million
program) and Illinois ($8 million program) combined annually produce
approximately the same number of new scrap tires as California. One
impact of the minimal funding has been the relatively slow pace in
cleaning up illegal tire piles, resulting in greater public exposure
to the dangers associated with large tire fires
To reduce the danger from uncontrolled burning of
large illegal tire piles, this report recommends setting the goal to
eliminate all known major (over 5,000 tires) illegal waste tire piles
within two years. This two-year objective can only be accomplished
through increasing funding for the tire program. Appendix 1 lays out
the need for a $40 million per year overall tire program for the
first two years, with adequate funding for major pile cleanups by the
State and smaller pile cleanups by local governments.
Although illegal tire pile cleanup and regulatory
enforcement are extremely important, the root cause of the tire
problem is lack of markets to reclaim and recycle scrap tires. As
long as there are insufficient markets to reclaim and recycle the
tires generated, scrap tires will continue to flow to landfills, the
lowest tier of the statutory hierarchy, or illegal disposal. This
means that any long-term solution has to address the creation of
sustainable markets to absorb the tires generated annually.
Accordingly, this report recommends goals for specific market
development efforts be established to develop industries that can put
the waste tires to productive use.
While there are developing markets for crumb
rubber products (rubberized asphalt and molded rubber products) and
tire shreds (lightweight road fill), the reality is that the primary
options available into the immediate future are energy conversion and
the lowest level of the hierarchy, landfilling. To develop the
businesses that can survive in the open marketplace, and to sustain
those that are currently diverting tires, an aggressive market
development and business retention program is necessary to provide
Appendix 1 proposes an optimum $40 million annual
program to meet the recommended goals to eliminate the major tire
piles, set up a local enforcement element, and provide a viable
market development/business retention program for reclaiming or
recycling scrap tires.
Increase funding to the tire program by
assessing a pass-through fee of $2.00 per tire upon the first entity
within California to take title or possession of the tire for use or
sale. Fees collected should be placed within the California Tire
Recycling Management Fund and this account be continuously
appropriated. [Accomplished by a statute change. Estimated cost
savings of $85,000].
The current collection of fees at the retail level
is very inefficient, as evidenced by the $484,000 cost to collect
$5,000,000 in 1998. The $40 million optimized program identified in
Appendix 1 can be satisfied by assessing a $2.00 fee in the same
manner currently used to collect the fee for the used oil program.
By requiring the first entity within California that takes title or
possession of the tire to pay the pass-through fee, collection is
moved to the wholesale level, minimizing the number of collection
Not only would moving the fee greatly simplify
collection, but the fee would be tied to the public creating the
waste tires. By collecting the fee within the tire distribution
chain, those individuals purchasing new tires with relatively short
tread life would pay more than the consumers who select longer
wearing tires and have to purchase tires less often. Further this
collection increases the participation of the tire manufacturing
industry through their distribution chain and, in effect, increases
manufacturer’s participation in the waste tire program. Another
consideration is one of equity. Currently those who purchase tires
wholesale, such as fleet vehicle operators, do not pay any disposal
The Board considered other options for fee
collection but believes collection at the wholesale level is
preferred. For example, the fee collection could be moved to the
Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV) and an assessment for passenger
and commercial vehicles made in conjunction with the annual vehicle
registration. There were 22,131,524 passenger and commercial
vehicles registered in California in 1998. A $1.80 fee would cover
the cost of the $40 million optimized program. However, it would
separate the fee from the tire purchasing chain and force those with
minimal contribution to the scrap tire problem (low mileage drivers
and purchasers of long-wearing tires) to pay a disproportionate share
in the program.
The Board also considered retaining the current
collection system—using tire retailers. This system has two
distinct disadvantages. First of all, as mentioned previously,
collection from the 7,000 retail locations is very inefficient and
expensive. Again, by collecting the fee at the retail level,
wholesale purchasers, such as fleet vehicle operators, escape paying
fees. This is something of a double-edged sword, where those using
the larger tires, which are more costly to handle in the waste
stream, escape payment of the fees used to clean up illegal disposal
Continuous appropriation authority is necessary
because Public Resources Code, Sections 42885-42889, provides that
money in the California Tire Recycling Management Fund shall be
available for cleanup activities only upon appropriation by the
Legislature. Due to the nature of the incoming money, i.e. the tire
fee, interest earnings, legal recovery, fines etc., it is often
difficult to project the cash reserves to accurately raise and lower
the appropriation authority during the arduous budget cycle.
It is also difficult to determine when a health
and safety issue surrounding the illegal storage or dumping of tires
will need immediate action by the board. As a permit requirement,
tire facilities are required to submit evidence of financial
assurances that are adequate to cover damage claims to cover the cost
of closure if that becomes necessary. The financial assurance can be
a trust fund, surety bond, letter of credit, insurance, or any other
financial arrangement acceptable to the board. This is also a
potential source of money for the fund, however, would not be
available to be spend for cleanup of a site until appropriated.
Currently, the Tire Fund has a reserve of
$5,301,000. During the economic hardship of the early 1990s many of
the special funds were used to meet the State’s minimum budgetary
needs. In 1996-1997, the Tire Fund reserve increased by $2.5 million
due to a control section transfer, which reimbursed the fund for
expenditures, related to those needs. Also, as the economy has
improved, revenues to the Tire Fund have increased.
Thus, in 1997-98 the revenues were approximately
$1.5 million higher than anticipated due to increases in revenue
($446,000), surplus money investment income ($108,000), penalties and
interest ($121,000), expenditure savings ($457,000), and prior year
adjustments ($356,000). This, in addition to the continued increase
in revenue in the current year, has increased the reserve to a level
that enables the Board to take some one-time and ongoing actions. It
also provides funds to allow for bridging between the current program
and, selectively, those recommended in this report.
Enforcement and Mitigation
During the meetings with stakeholders involved in
the diversion of waste tires, the main concerns voiced were the need
for increased enforcement of the rules and elimination of illegal
stockpiles. It was pointed out that failure to enforce, or
inconsistent enforcement, creates major problems for legitimate
businesses. Law-abiding businesses have difficulty competing with
those that willfully ignore the rules and thereby avoid costs
associated with the regulatory process.
Failure to enforce waste tire hauling and storage
rules directly leads to the creation of illegal waste tire storage
piles. The creation of illegal tire piles has led to many different
environmental problems, including mosquito and vector outbreaks, and
worst of all, long-lasting, uncontrolled tire fires such as that seen
near Tracy in August, 1998. The prime objectives of the following
recommendations are to effectively ban tire piles at unpermitted
facilities and create an enforcement program to deter the formation
of new illegal piles.
Current statutes give the Board the authority and
responsibility to administer the entire waste tire program. In many
respects, consolidation has been advantageous in that there is one
entity accountable for the development of policy, setting of goals,
and enforcing statutory requirements. The AB 117 workshops and
written inputs from stakeholders have pointed out, however, that the
program could benefit from greater participation from local
Individual tire facilities and illegal waste tire
piles are usually well known to local authorities. The relative
environmental, social, and economic issues associated with problem
facilities and illegal tire piles are also best known and understood
by local officials. In contrast, the movement of tires between
facilities and into illegal piles raises issues that can fall outside
the knowledge and authority of local officials. Expressed another
way, local authorities know the problem tire piles and unlawful
operators within their jurisdictions, but have limited knowledge of
businesses that operate statewide and take tires to and from sites in
several different jurisdictions.
A more effective program would take advantage of
local government’s knowledge and understanding of the elements of
the waste tire infrastructure within their borders. An effective
program would also maximize State government’s ability to identify
and track the movement of tires between jurisdictions. The Board
currently has the authority to delegate functions and authority to
local governments and has awarded grants to jurisdictions that have
shown interest in becoming involved in the State program. There has
not been widespread local government interest in current grant
programs, reportedly due to the administrative costs to pursue
relatively small grants offered.
Recommendations No. 2 through No. 7 are designed
Encourage local governments to
more actively participate in the enforcement program.
Clean up existing illegal tire
piles and ban the creation of new ones.
Improve the tire manifest system
in order to monitor the movement of waste tires.
Speed up the identification and
apprehension of those willfully operating outside the law.
Prevent waste tire pile fires and
deal with those that do occur.
the ability of the Board to administer the waste tire program.
Create a permanent, voluntary,
noncompetitive grant program to reimburse local jurisdictions for
inspection of scrap tire generators and initiation of necessary
enforcement actions. [Accomplished through reallocation of tire
funds. Estimated cost $1,000,000 per year].
This recommended program could use the existing
Local Enforcement Agencies (LEA) to inspect tire generators within
their individual jurisdictions. Costs associated with periodically
visiting waste tire facilities and seeking out illegal waste tire
piles would be reimbursed from a permanently dedicated portion of the
California Tire Recycling Management Fund. To make certain the
regulated community has the needed information, those regulated need
to be identified and specific information provided to them on
compliance requirements. Since many of those affected are small
independent businesses, a concerted effort could be made through
local enforcement agencies, such as building and fire inspectors and
The question of delegation of authority to local
officials surfaced during the AB 117 stakeholder meetings and in the
written comments. Statute currently allows the Board to delegate
certain authority to local governments, so this is not a barrier. It
was the consensus that portions of an enforcement program could be
done most efficiently by local government, however, political will
and finances are the big barriers in local government taking over
The State currently has a grant program for LEAs
to assist in identifying illegal piles and performing the initial
enforcement steps. Participation in the program has not been
universal for a variety of reasons (not enough money, tire problem
not a significant local problem, lack of staff, etc.). What did come
out was that local governments would be more enthusiastic for such a
program if greater outside funding, training, and legal assistance
could be provided. There was also agreement that there may be value
in developing a model waste tire ordinance which local governments
The enforcement actions taken on an illegal or
unpermitted site follow a specific course, which is:
A “Letter of Violation” is
issued. The facility is usually given up to six weeks to submit a
plan on how it will come into compliance.
A “Warning Letter” is issued
if a compliance plan is not received within the time limit. This
letter grants additional time for plan submission (three weeks).
The Board issues a “Cleanup and
Abatement Order” requiring compliance. Approximately three months
is allowed for submitting a compliance plan.
An “Administrative Complaint”
is initiated and the case is referred to the Office of
Administrative Hearings (approximately two months to accomplish).
A “Criminal Report of
Investigation” is prepared and the case is referred to the
District Attorney for action.
final step in the process is cost recovery of funds awarded through
administrative and legal processes. This is a time-consuming
process that can last an indefinitely.
Under this recommendation, participating LEAs
would periodically visit waste tire generators and examine the
facilities to insure compliance with State minimum standards. During
these visits they would also verify the number of waste tires on site
and spot-check the waste tire manifests on file. The Board would
create an education program to support local enforcement agencies and
create a model ordinance that can be used by local governments.
For noncompliance with State minimum standards,
the LEA would issue Letters of Violation and Warning Letters, as
appropriate. If the problem could not be remedied through a Warning
Letter, the violator would be referred to the Board for issuance of a
“Cleanup & Abatement Order” or any further administrative or
legal actions necessary. The Board would work with local authorities
in pursuing cases through any necessary administrative and judicial
A report of each visit would be sent to the Board
to verify the number of waste tires on site and identify any
significant problems with the waste tire manifests. Board
enforcement staff would pursue identified manifest problems.
For those jurisdictions opting not to participate
in the program, the current process would remain in effect.
Participation in the program should be contingent upon the local
jurisdiction adopting a model local ordinance or equivalent. Since
this program would be an essential element in the overall waste tire
enforcement program, it should be acknowledged as a fixed expense in
the annual waste tire budget.
The program should begin with a pilot program of
approximately four to six jurisdictions for the first year to
determine the necessary funding and most optimum sharing of
responsibilities between the State and local governments.
The Board would evaluate whether this grant program could
absorb other current grant programs (Tire Recycling Grants, Local
Government Cleanup Grants, and Local Amnesty Days) to reduce
The Board should initiate an aggressive
two-year program to eliminate all known major illegal waste tire
piles and develop a program to help local governments find and
eliminate the remaining minor illegal tire piles. [Accomplished
through reallocation of tire funds. Estimated cost $8,575,000 per
year to clean up large piles; $6,500,000 per year for local cleanup
of small piles.]
Remediating existing tire piles is a challenge.
The costs associated with remediation are considerable and property
owners and operators are many times reluctant to expend the money for
major cleanup operations. Industry considers remediation to be
second only to enforcement in priority. The legal process to compel
cleanup is quite lengthy and expensive and is initiated only after
direct negotiations fail and the Board has exhausted its
administrative enforcement actions against the property owners.
The problem is compounded because many times the
tire piles are located on economically undesirable land and cleanup
costs exceed the value of the land itself, making land seizure a
hollow threat. In other cases the property owners are victims of
unscrupulous operators (tenants) and do not have the necessary
resources to pay for cleanup. In any case, the rationale for the
Board to step in to clean up the site is a simple one—due to the
fire threat, waste tire sites pose a significant threat to public
health and safety and it costs less to clean up a site before a tire
fire than it does afterwards.
The Board should initiate an aggressive two-year
cleanup program to eliminate all known major illegal waste tire piles
(over 5,000 tires in size). Completely eliminating the largest
illegal piles will greatly reduce the major environmental dangers
associated with waste tires and will provide a positive message to
the public that progress is being made toward an overall solution.
Finding and eliminating the remaining minor
illegal tire piles can more efficiently be accomplished at the local
level. The Board should develop a voluntary program to reimburse
local detection and cleanup programs addressing the minor (500-5,000
tires) tire piles. To be eligible for reimbursement under this
program, the enforcement process described in Recommendation No. 1
would have to be followed and approval from the Board received prior
to commencing cleanup.
Continue the current manifest system
with five modifications. These modifications are:
the loop” on accountability, i.e. have copies of each manifest
returned to the Board for monitoring.
for imported scrap and used tires.
for “one time hauls” to support amnesty days and individual
cleanup of small tire piles.
from five to ten the maximum number of waste and used tires that can
be transported without having to obtain a waste tire hauler permit.
Develop a process to allow a
hauler to temporarily substitute a replacement vehicle for a
permanently registered vehicle.
[Accomplished through a change in
statute. Additional cost to recipient of out-of-state tires to
prepare manifest. Local costs to set up one-time-haul program. Cost
to Board $400,000 per year for staff to monitor manifests].
The enforcement of the registered waste tire
hauler and waste tire manifest regulations has been minimal at best.
The main focus of the Board’s enforcement program has been on the
legacy piles and illegal dumping.
Recently, Board staff has been directed to
increase efforts in enforcement of registration/manifest regulations.
The California Highway Patrol is initiating a waste tire hauler
enforcement training program using a Board-funded video. Recent
inspections by Board staff of waste tire facilities, waste tire
haulers, tire dealers and disposal facilities show that, in many
cases, either the manifest isn't used to transport waste tires from
one location to another or it isn't filled out correctly. The Board
has the enforcement tools to remedy the problems in that it can take
administrative action against generators not using licensed haulers,
it has the authority to revoke the permits of licensed haulers, and
it can revoke the permits of end users accepting tires from
There are several issues relating to the tire
hauler program. The newly instituted manifest system is just being
implemented and there is some confusion throughout the industry on
process and requirement. There have been comments that the program
is unenforceable, onerous to the regulated community, and rife with
unnecessary requirements. AB 117 meetings and written input from
the stakeholders do not support these allegations of deficiency. It
is apparent that the regulated community needs additional training
and information on the new requirements and enforcement needs to be
increased to deal with the illegal haulers. The Board is currently in
the process of mailing out thousands of pamphlets to affected
businesses. This training would be expanded to the local enforcement
“Close the loop” on accountability.
Currently the scrap tire generator, hauler, and legal end user must
make entries on the manifest forms and retain copies. With this
system, it is virtually impossible to do any sort of audit to assure
tires are flowing correctly through the system. Tracking a particular
shipment currently requires the auditor to pull three sets of files
at as many as three separate locations.
The proposed change would require the tire
generator, hauler, and the end user of a shipment to forward a copy
of the tire manifest to the Board confirming the number of tires
shipped and the number of tires received in a specific transaction.
The manifest would have sufficient copies to allow the generator,
hauler, and end user to retain individual copies. The Board would
develop a system (such as the use of bar coded stick-ons for
participant identification, and postage-paid forms) to make the
system a minimal administrative and financial burden on the industry.
Such a manifest system would allow the Board to track the flow of
tires by comparing beginning and end point documentation for tire
Account for imported scrap and used tires.
There is currently no method to accurately determine the number of
scrap and used tires being imported into the state, nor are they
controlled through the manifest system. To provide accountability
for the imported scrap and used tires, the first recipient within the
state should prepare a modified manifest and forward a copy to the
This means that if a cement kiln receives a tire
shipment directly from an out-of-state source, the kiln is
responsible for preparing the final section of a manifest and
forwarding a copy of that manifest directly to the Board. Similarly,
if a hauler picks up a shipment of scrap and/or used tires from
outside California and takes them to a central processing facility,
the processing facility must prepare the final section of the
manifest and forward it to the Board.
Provide for one-time hauls. The lack of a
procedure to allow for one-time haul has been flagged as a problem by
virtually everyone and immediate correction is needed. There is
currently no process by which an individual can haul relatively small
numbers of tires from his/her own property to a legal end-use
facility. The legal end use facility could provide an authorization
document and/or a display placard to an individual for a one-time
For example, if John Doe wanted to clean up the
waste tires dumped on his property, he could call or visit the
facility to which the haul is to be made and get a one-day haul
permit to take waste tires to the specific receiving site. Such a
procedure could be publicized in the same manner communities
currently use to inform the public of recycling programs (inserts in
utility bills etc.). This system can also be used on amnesty days
where local governments could issue the authorizations. This process
would have to be closely monitored to insure that a hauler does not
use the process to bypass the hauler permitting process.
Increase the number of tires that can be
transported without a permit. The current limit of five tires is
overly restrictive and acts as a disincentive for individuals to
clean up minor piles on their own property. Several other states
have found that a 10-tire limit is appropriate.
Develop a process to allow a temporary
substitute vehicle. A tire hauler currently cannot use a rental
or substitute vehicle to temporarily replace a registered vehicle. A
regulatory change is necessary to accommodate this necessary business
The Board should be given release from
trespass liability when inspecting problem sites, and statute should
be amended to clarify and augment the Board’s ability to convert an
administrative penalty into a civil judgement in superior court
without having to involve the Attorney General. Haulers that
illegally dispose of tires at unpermitted or noncompliant sites
should have their permits revoked. [Accomplished through a change in
statute. No cost].
One issue in assessing and cleaning up illegal
waste tire sites is that the Board
cannot get permission from owners/operators for site access.
Initially, the Board attempts to obtain voluntary site access.
However, if this fails the Board must pursue site access through the
Attorney General’s office, which, in turn, would obtain access
through the courts.
This gives the Board permission to go onto a site
for health and safety reasons; however, the statute giving the
authority does not relieve the Board from trespass liability. This
lack of relief from trespass liability greatly reduces the Board’s
incentive to go onto a potential problem site. In contrast, it was
stated that the Department of Toxics and Substance Control has
enforcement authority similar to the Board, however, they have been
given immunity from trespass liability. This release from liability
is necessary for the program to move efficiently through the legal
Additionally, statute should be amended to
clarify and augment the Board’s ability to convert an
administrative penalty into a civil judgement in superior court,
without having to involve the Attorney General. Currently, the Board
must pursue a two-step process to recover civil penalties and this
extends the time required to mitigate problem sites. Giving the
Board the ability to convert an administrative penalty will bring the
Board’s authority in line with that of the State Water Resources
Control Board and Department of Toxics and Substance Control.
After receiving two violations of hauling tires
without a permit, an offender should have the message that such a
permit is required. On the third violation the Board should have the
authority to seize the vehicle of the “scofflaw” operator.
To prevent waste tire pile fires and
deal with those that do occur, the Board should work with the Office
of the State Fire Marshall to update the tire fire curriculum, work
with appropriate State agencies to develop a tire fire protocol, and
work with the Western Fire Chiefs Association to update and amend the
Uniform Fire Code. The Board should also take the lead in making
certain the most current information is available on the nature of
tire fires. [Accomplished through Inter-Agency Agreements and
contracts. Estimated cost one time cost of $350,000].
Training is a key element for both waste tire fire
prevention and suppression. In 1993, the Board entered into an
interagency agreement (IAA) with the Office of the State Fire
Marshal (OSFM) to develop a tire fire training curriculum for the
state's local fire authorities. This IAA included the development of
a textbook and video called Rings of Fire, an instructor’s
manual, and a slide program. The OSFM then trained instructors
around the state, who would then in turn train local fire
The continued interest in the program is evidenced
by the fact that the majority of the 3000 Rings of Fire
student textbooks printed under the first IAA had been distributed as
of October 1996. This program has been well received by the local
fire authorities, and as noted by Michael Blumenthal of the Scrap
Tire Management Council at the September 1996 Tire Workshop, this
program has represented one of the best uses of the State's Tire
Planning involves the standards under which waste
tire facilities must comply and the procedures for suppressing a
waste tire fire in the event one occurs. Current regulations allow a
local fire authority to set requirements for a particular facility
that are different from the standards presented in the regulations.
The training discussed above aids local fire authorities in setting
requirements for storing waste tires, as well as developing fire
suppression plans with the operators.
Some waste-tire storage facilities have had a
tendency to exceed their storage requirements in a short period of
time. Therefore, it is important that these facilities be inspected
on a regular basis. Thus, the training that local fire authorities
receive in this area will impress upon them the importance of
regulating waste tire storage. With the combined effort of local
fire authorities, local enforcement agencies, and Board staff, most
waste tire facilities should conform to the waste tire statute and
The Board should contract with the OSFM or a
private consultant to update the State Fire Marshall’s tire fire
curriculum utilizing current information regarding prevention and
suppression of waste tire fires and advanced methods for delivering
the program. In 1997, the Board entered into such an agreement with
the OSFM, but the agreement was terminated when it was decided that
an additional study on the air emissions and health effects from tire
fires should be performed first.
A tire fire protocol should be developed with the
Office of Emergency Services (OES) along with the California
Department of Forestry and Fire Protection (CDFFP) and OSFM. This
effort would be done under a memo of understanding with OES and
funded through the California Tire Recycling Management Fund.
Even though the Board does not take a direct role
in the initial suppression of a waste tire fire, it is aware of the
need for improved coordination during the initial hours of the fire.
For example, a decision may have to be made at the onset of the waste
tire fire as to what action needs to be taken regarding residents or
businesses located in the path of the smoke plume. Those agencies
that may need to coordinate their efforts at the onset of a large
waste tire fire include the local health department, the Air Quality
Management District, the Regional Water Quality Control Board,
Cal/EPA, U.S. EPA, and other agencies.
Local fire departments rely heavily on the Uniform
Fire Code, which comes under the jurisdiction of the Western Fire
Chiefs Association. This code needs to be updated and amended to
reflect the latest body of knowledge associated with tire fires.
This can be accomplished by the Board entering into an interagency
agreement with the Western Fire Chiefs Association.
The response to a waste tire fire is a function of
training, coordination, and resources available. Most local fire
authorities participate in mutual aid agreements, whereby they have
access to manpower and equipment from neighboring local fire
authorities. However, certain types of equipment and material, such
as foam in large enough quantities, may not be readily available.
Tire fires present unique problems to the
firefighter. There is virtually no substance available to suppress
the fire once it starts. Neither water nor standard foams have been
consistently effective in stopping fires in large piles. Similarly,
there is limited knowledge as to what toxic substances are present in
fumes from tire fires, which could create serious problems for those
having to fight such fires. The Board should take a lead role in
determining whether there is adequate research in this area and, if
not, initiate the appropriate studies.
The Board should perform a thorough
evaluation of waste tire program staff organization, planning, data
collection, and contracting procedures. [Accomplished through
internal review. Costs included in recommended additional
An independent evaluation of Board programs
identified multiple areas where improvements can be made in the
administration of the waste tire program. The Board needs to review
these recommendations and make appropriate adjustments.
For example, several members of the stakeholder
group have a strong feeling that there is a need to change Board
waste tire pile remediation contracting procedures. A specific
recommendation from the Scrap Tire Legislative Working Group for
revising the scrap tire remediation contracts follows:
Establish a regular (every 1-2 years) prequalification period for
companies or teams of companies to be approved as potential
contractors for tire remediation projects. All of those companies
meeting the full requirements would then be identified as
each tire remediation project separately or in logical geographic
groups to all pre-qualified contractors.
each tire remediation, identify the project-specific priorities,
i.e., time frame vs. cost vs. final destination of the tires. Also
for each project, any unique restrictions such as operating times,
routings, etc. should be clearly identified in each request for bid.
a standardized form required for all prequalified contractors to use
when submitting bids. Bids should be evaluated by an objective
point system considering cost, timeliness, and legal final
destination options. The Board should encourage end use of illegal
tires when it makes sense, by offering additional points to bidders
opting to utilize the tires versus landfilling them.
and record all bids in a public setting immediately following the
The remediation division and the
contractor should complete regular reports and a final performance
evaluation for presentation to the Board Members.
A recent tire facility permitting hearing brought
out a potential problem with financial assurance regulations.
Current regulations allow an operator to accumulate the necessary
financial assurance trust fund over a period of five years. With a
permit, a facility can accumulate the maximum number of allowed scrap
tires immediately. This leads to a potential problem of having a
facility in operation for several years without having adequate
financial assurance to cover all the scrap tires on site. This
problem can be resolved through a change in regulations.
Stakeholders found little fault with the current
permitting process other than who should be covered. The withdrawal
of regulatory exclusions has created considerable concern that there
are many inappropriately covered by the permitting process. The
following recommendations are designed to:
Make the permitting process more
the permitting process better reflect health and safety dangers.
Change definitions in statute to make
the permitting process less demanding on facilities that present
minimal environmental risks. [Accomplished through a change of
statute. No cost].
Current statutes state: “waste tire” means a
tire that is not on the wheel of a vehicle and is not suitable for
its original intended use due to wear, damage, defect or deviation
from the manufacturer’s original specifications; this includes all
used tires, altered waste tires, recappable casings and scrap tires.”
By including used tires and recappable tires in
the definition of “waste tire,” thousands of tire dealers
throughout the state now fall under the full regulatory purview of
the Board. Permitting of these facilities has placed significant new
requirements on individual dealers and has posed a significant
challenge to the permitting and enforcement sections of the Board.
Further, the inclusion of processed tires in the
definition technically extends the Board’s authority well down the
line of beneficial use. For example, a playground that opts to use
tire shreds as a ground cover to minimize the impact of a child’s
fall could theoretically be required to obtain a waste tire facility
The inclusion of used tires and recappable tires
in the definition of a waste tire has caused considerable
consternation with the tire dealers and they have consistently taken
the position that used and recappable tires are not waste but are
part of the economic mainstream. The tire dealers make the point
that legitimate tire dealers do not contribute to the health and
safety problems associated with waste tires (uncontrolled tire piles,
roadside dumping, etc.) and they should not be forced into a
burdensome regulatory program.
In a similar vein, tires-to-energy facilities
maintain that the tire shreds they store on site are feedstock and
not waste. They also believe that they should not be subject to
regulations and controls designed to regulate uncontrolled tire piles
and excessive concentrations of tires and tire parts. The exclusion
currently provided to cement kilns that burn tires is recognition
that there should be special consideration using tires for fuel.
The challenge is to create a regulatory system
that protects the public from health and safety dangers associated
with the storage of non-new tires. At the same time the system
should not add an unnecessary regulatory burden on responsible
commercial enterprises dealing with non-new tires.
It is recommended statute be changed to reflect
the following definitions:
“Altered Waste Tire” means a
waste tire that is no longer whole, including but not limited to,
waste tires that have been shredded, chopped, or split apart.
Altered waste tires include baled tires, but do not include crumb
“Baling” means mechanically
compressing and securing whole waste tires into a bale.
“Crumb Rubber” means rubber
granules derived from waste tires that are less than or equal to 1/4
inch in diameter.
“Passenger Tire Equivalents
(PTE)” means the total weight of whole and altered tires in
pounds, divided by 20.
“Permitting of Waste Tire
Facilities.” For the purposes of permitting of waste tire
facilities the number of waste tires stored at the facility shall be
computed as the aggregate sum of the PTE for all waste tire storage
units at the facility.
“Repairable Tire” means a
worn, damaged, or defective tire that is retreadable, recappable, or
regrooveable, or that can be otherwise repaired to return it to its
originally intended purpose.
“Scrap Tire” means a tire that
is not repairable.
“Tire-Derived Product” means
material that (1) is derived from a process using whole tires as a
feedstock, and (2) has been sold and removed from the processing
facility. The process using the whole tires could be, but is not
limited to shredding, crumbing, or chipping.
“Tire Storage Unit” means
piles, stacks, or other organizational units of stored tires where
10 percent or more PTEs are derived from waste tires.
“Used Tire” means a tire that
is no longer mounted on a vehicle but is still suitable for use as a
vehicle tire. Used tires must meet the requirements of the
California Vehicle Code, and those of Title 13, California Code of
Regulations. Used tires are organized for inspection andresale
by size in racks or stacks, but not in piles, in a manner as
approved by the local fire marshal and vector control authorities or
the State minimum standards.
“Used Tire Dealer” means a
business operating under the terms and conditions of a local use
permit or business license, the primary purpose of which is to sell
used tires for profit.
“Waste Tire” means a tire that
is no longer mounted on a vehicle and is no longer suitable for use
as a vehicle tire due to wear, damage, defect, or deviation from the
manufacturer’s original specifications. Waste tires include
repairable tires, scrap tires, and altered waste tires; waste tires
do not include tire-derived products crumb rubber, or properly
stored, as defined, used tires.
Develop a tiered permitting system for
waste tire facilities and operations that takes multiple factors into
consideration and issues different levels of permits. [Accomplished
through a change of regulations. Costs included in recommended
additional administrative staff].
The Board has an established tiered permitting
process that was developed to account for the variations in health
and safety risks associated with facilities and operations in
different functional areas. For example, there are currently tiered
regulations in place for transfer stations and compost facilities.
In a tiered system, other factors that could be
considered in determining the regulatory oversight necessary for a
particular business could include:
Measure the inventory turnover of
a business. A business that is turning its inventory will
probably not be storing excessive numbers of scrap tires. This issue
was very important to industry.
Storage methods can be considered.
Inside storage, storage in roadworthy trailers or dedicated covered
bins, size segregated used tire stacks, etc., do not pose the same
dangers as a commingled pile of tires of random sizes and shapes.
It would be necessary, and desirable, to go
through a complete rule-making process to develop the regulations to
implement a tiered program.
Remove tire-derived products from the
permitting process after the products have been sold and removed
from the manufacturing facility. [Accomplished through a change of
statute. No cost].
It has been stated that any tire product that was
reduced to a size less than 10 mesh is definitely not a waste.
Clearly, the cost of processing to get the tire to a significantly
reduced size is sufficient to remove it from the waste category. It
is also a concept that waste tires and processed tires should be
considered to have economic value if they are purchased by an end
user, or if they provide a beneficial end use by replacing a product
of value (example: tires and shreds that replace coal in energy
production). To implement this option to the fullest, the Board
needs more discretion to determine exclusions.
Determine permitting requirements for a
facility or operation by using a “passenger tire equivalent” (PTE
) method. [Accomplished through a change of statute. No cost].
The accumulation and final disposition of waste
tires has been the subject of much discussion. In the area of how to
measure the impact of a tire storage area, there were two schools of
thought. One group advocated the counting of individual tires as a
determining factor for permitting. Another group advocated the use
of PTEs where every 20–25 pounds of tire rubber count as one tire.
The “count individual tire” group more closely follows precedents
found in other states, while the PTE group maintains that this
approach better reflects economic and environmental impact reality.
It is recommended that PTEs be used to determine
permitting requirements for waste tire storage areas. Potential
cleanup costs and environmental hazards (fire, vector control, etc.)
are factors of the mass of tire rubber involved, not the number of
tires. For example, a fire at a site with 1,000 giant earthmover
tires poses a much greater risk than a fire at a site with 1,000
automobile tires. Since regulatory control should reflect the danger
to the public interest, the use of PTEs appears the better course.
The formula used to determine PTEs at a storage site would be
developed during the rulemaking process.
Virtually everyone agrees that market development
is the ultimate solution to the waste tire problem. If markets were
strong enough there would be no tire piles or illegal dumping.
Agreement soon wavers, however, when the discussion shifts to how to
address individual elements of the market. Economic factors are the
driving influences that determine the flow of scrap tires.
Section 1 of this report, “Infrastructure and
Economics,” discussed how the different segments handle scrap
tires. One of the critical elements in the system is the decision of
the hauler as to the final destination of the tires. Since there are
few paying end users to take the tires off the hauler’s hands, the
hauler looks for the least expensive method of getting rid of the
tires. This economic fact greatly complicates the Board’s efforts
to implement the desire of the Legislature to utilize the scrap tires
in a particular hierarchy.
To assist in the discussion of market development,
it is necessary to review the priorities and hierarchy established in
statute for waste management practices. While Public Resource Code
Section 40051 does not specifically address waste tires, it does
relate to the entire waste stream, including tires. This general
guidance is the basis for discussions on hierarchy.
40051. In implementing this division, the board and local agencies
shall do both of the following:
Promote the following waste management practices in order of
Recycling and composting.
Environmentally safe transformation and environmentally safe land
disposal, at the discretion of the city or county.
(b) Maximize the use of all feasible
source reduction, recycling, and composting options in order to
reduce the amount of solid waste that must be disposed of by
transformation and land disposal. For wastes that cannot feasibly be
reduced at their source, recycled, or composted, the local agency may
use environmentally safe transformation or environmentally safe land
disposal, or both of those practices.
And specifically relating to tires:
PRC 42861.(d) . Used tires represent a
valuable state resource which should be reclaimed and recycled
whenever possible. An abundance of tire recycling alternatives exist
which have been demonstrated to be environmentally safe. These
alternatives need to be promoted in order to achieve the maximum use
of used tires.
In applying the general AB 939 statutory guidance
to the major waste tire markets, the following is a priority listing
of market elements and current efforts noted:
useful life of tire by encouraging used tire dealers and exporters
tire recappers are already established
engineering uses such as:
Technology Center and working group with Caltrans
lightweight road fill—working with Caltrans
reinforcement—demonstration project in progress
fields—demonstration project in progress
gas collection systems—research completed
beneficial uses include:
rubber production and molded rubber products—mats, mouse pads,
items—door mats, swings, tarp retaining systems, etc.
daily cover—2.8 million tires in 1998
and land application
(relative priority based on degree of
recovery of resources and relative environmental impact)
consuming approximately 5 million tires per year
current consumption; primarily engaged in permitting process and
Kilns—permitted capacity of approximately 6 million tires;
consuming large numbers of imported tires
12 million tires in 1998
Table 3-1: Current Market Status
implementing any market development programs, it is anticipated that
the Board would give due consideration to the hierarchy and
priorities in statute.
During the early years of the market development
program, 1991-1994, the Board funded grant programs to identify and
develop technologies to develop markets primarily in the area of
“high end” users. While several promising technologies were
identified, with the exception of rubberized asphalt concrete and
playground surfacing, there was general lack of success in having the
commercial investors come forward to develop major new markets. The
chief barriers to developing “high end” uses for tire derived
products are purely economic. Low landfill disposal fees and the
relatively high costs to produce the crumb rubber necessary for most
of the end products are the factors driving tire diversion.
In recent years, 1995 to present, emphasis has
shifted to projects that have the potential to consume large numbers
of tires. Here the emphasis on levee reinforcement, landfill
leachate and gas collection, and low-density highway fill projects
have been given more attention. There was discussion that the cost
per tire should be the driving factor in supporting market programs,
but it has been pointed out that high initial costs can lead to
expanded programs and reduction in disposal cost over time, so using
the cost per tire as the sole criteria for assistance is
In the balance between funding market development
and enforcement (including tire pile cleanup) the Board has attempted
to maintain an even distribution.
Following are recommendations for specific
In Maine, the use of tire shreds in civil
engineering projects has provided a very large market for scrap
tires. Such an end-use market has not yet been established in
California. The recommended goal for the use of tire shreds in civil
engineering highway projects is to increase usage, over a 3-year
period, to 4 million tires per year.
The Board should provide instruction
and grants to State and Local agencies to encourage the civil
engineering use of waste tire products. A second technology center
should be established to service Northern California. [Accomplished
through budget process. Estimated cost of $2,770,000 first year;
$2,600,000 per year thereafter].
This element should follow the lead of the
Rubberized Asphalt Concrete (RAC) Technology Center administered by
Los Angeles County and should include training and assistance for all
civil engineering uses (light-weight fill, septic drain fields, levee
reinforcement, RAC, etc.). The efforts currently being expended to
expand the use of RAC and other civil engineering uses could be
administered through the same staff element via contracts with
specialists. The Board has expressed support for a second Technology
Center to be established for support of local communities in Northern
Rubberized Asphalt Concrete (RAC)
This is a technology of special interest because
it has the potential of diverting a large volume of tires to a very
beneficial end use. There have been numerous suggestions that the
use of RAC should be mandated upon Caltrans to guarantee increased
usage. The Rubber Pavements Association, Caltrans, and at least one
major crumb rubber producer all oppose such a mandate because they
believe that rubberized asphalt is a good product and should be
accepted on its own merits.
The Board should continue to support
the work of the Rubber Pavement Team. [Accomplished through staff
assignments. No cost].
There is currently a working group (Rubber
Pavement Team) with representatives from Caltrans, Rubber Pavements
Association, NCAPA, and the Board. This group is working to forge
the necessary partnerships to resolve answer issues relating to the
technical aspects of using RAC, specifically in the areas of
application guidelines and the use of warranties.
Caltrans should be directed to develop
guidelines for the use of RAC within one year. The guidelines should
be developed in consultation and cooperation with the rubber and
regular asphalt producers and based on thorough analysis of previous
Caltrans projects using RAC. [Accomplished through statute.
Estimated one time cost of $20,000.]
RAC has been used in California since 1980, and
specifications have been published, yet there are no established
guidelines for its use. In order for RAC to be more widely accepted
by the engineering community of Caltrans, there must be an analysis
made of prior projects, lessons learned must be publicized, and
definitive guidelines published. This requires an analysis of prior
projects to determine the cause of any prior failures.
It is generally recognized that RAC is not
suitable for all paving projects and until guidelines are developed,
there will be a justifiable reluctance on the part of many Caltrans
engineers to use the product. The recommended goal for the use of
RAC by Caltrans is a minimum of 20 percent of asphalt projects in FY
2000/2001, a minimum of 30 percent in 2001/2002, and a minimum of 40
percent in years beyond. The goal for RAC use by local jurisdictions
is to reach 4 million tons per year by the end of calendar 2002.
It is recognized that molded rubber products do
not consume large numbers of waste tires at this time, however, the
potential for developing a significant end-use market for a multitude
of products does exist and should be nurtured.
As an example, the Board has made 43 grants to
school districts and local governments for a total of $720,000 for
the purchase of playground mats made from scrap tires. The Americans
With Disabilities Act (ADA) legislation requires playgrounds to
provide wheelchair access and there are a variety of methods this can
be done. Board grants have provided assistance to some jurisdictions
to comply with ADA and publicize the possibility of using scrap tires
in this manner.
Manufacturers using scrap tires to produce mats
have indicated that general markets are growing and the 15-20 per
cent of their production related to Board grants have been
contributory to the market growth. The goal in this area is to
retain the current level of usage and support research to develop
The Board should continue to modestly
fund loans and grants to specific projects and monitor developments
of molded rubber products. [Accomplished through staff assignments,
grants, and contracts. Estimated cost of $1,500,000 per year.]
State and Local Procurement
For any product to be recycled, someone must buy
the end product containing the recycled material. With tires this is
particularly challenging and the Board should work with government
purchasing agents to make them aware of opportunities. For waste
tires to be recycled, they usually have to be recapped or processed
in some manner—shredded or crumbed.
The State’s use of recapped tires has been
minimal due to a shortage of tires that can meet the necessary
quality criteria. For shredded tires, applications are primarily in
the area of civil engineering. For crumb rubber there are many
options for use. The State gives a 5 percent preference to State
agencies for purchase of products made from recycled tires. The
products include, but are not limited to, retreaded tires, asphalt
rubber, floor tile, playground mats, carpet underlay, oil, natural
gas, carbon black, mats, drainage pipe, and garbage cans. See also
the discussion for RAC.
Advertising of products made from recycled rubber
has not been a high priority and there is not a particularly good
record of State and local procurement officials giving preference to
materials made from recycled tire rubber. Suppliers have compounded
this problem by failing to certify the recycled content in their
Increasing the use of materials manufactured from
crumb rubber would result in minor diversion when contrasted to the
massive potential diversion of rubberized asphalt, fuel use, and
civil engineering applications. Additional efforts could be made in
this area to increase the purchases of State and local governments
and increase public awareness of the recyclability of tires.
The Board should work with the Scrap
Tire Management Council to develop a California version of a Scrap
Tire Products Catalog. [Accomplished through staff action. Add to
current listing of available recycled products].
The Scrap Tire Management Council currently puts
out a nationwide catalog of products made from scrap tires.
California could expand its current listing and distribute such a
catalog to government and private industry procurement officers
and/or put the information on the Board web page. Special emphasis
could be placed on working with the Federal procurement system as
well, since it also has guidance to use recycled materials. It would
also be possible to have a special section added to the Board’s
current listing of recycled materials and the California Materials
The Department of General Services
should be required to promote the purchase of products made from
recycled tires through the State Contract Register and inclusion of
contracts providing such products on the new DGS computer system
(California Statewide Procurement Network). [Accomplished through
interagency agreement with DGS. No cost.]
This is the new method of communicating with
contractors. The system can provide contractors opportunities to buy
materials containing recycled tire rubber and needs to be
Retreaded passenger car and truck tires
should be purchased through a statewide contract. [Accomplished
through an interagency agreement with DGS. No cost].
A statewide contract could focus on recapped tires
and achieve savings through economy of scale.
From statutory guidance, source reduction is the
highest priority waste management practice. One of the most direct
ways of accomplishing source reduction is to educate and inform the
population on the impacts of certain actions and suggest alternatives
that are more environmentally acceptable. In this vein, education of
the general population on the importance of proper maintenance and
the proper disposal of tires is necessary to increase useful tire
life and decrease the illegal dumping of discarded tires.
A broad based information/education
program, similar to that of the waste oil program, could be
established to stress the desirability of purchasing long wearing
tires, proper disposal of waste tires. and proper maintenance of
tires currently in use (rotation, proper inflation, etc.). Further, a
partnership could be formed with the tire manufacturers to explore
the development of techniques to use higher recycled content in the
production of new tires. [Accomplished through staff assignment.
Estimated cost $6,000,000 per year for information/education program
and $500,000 for two years to do cooperative research with the tire
This program can be accomplished in partnership
with the tire dealers and manufacturers and build upon work done with
local government grant projects. A multimedia program using radio
and TV would be very beneficial in passing the messages on the
desirability of purchasing long wearing tires and encouraging proper
tire care and maintenance. A professional public relations firm would
be hired to develop the presentations of the Board messages and time
would be purchased on radio and TV channels to transmit the messages.
The education program could also support local
amnesty days funded by the tire program. In conjunction with the
notification of these days, informational materials can be
distributed along with fliers notifying the public of the amnesty day
dates. It is also important to introduce information on
environmental impacts of tires (fires, rodents, mosquitoes, etc.)
into school programs along with other information provided on
Reuse of tire rubber in the production of new
tires could provide a significant new market scrap tires and reduce
the number going into the waste stream. Accordingly, it would be
beneficial to explore forming a partnership with the tire industry to
develop methods and techniques to use more recycled content in the
production of new tires.
Transformation of tires presents a range of
complex issues. The use of tires as an energy source is one of the
few economical uses available at this time and accounts for well over
one-half of the current diversion. In effect, the options currently
facing us are to either dispose of most tires through controlled
burning for energy recovery or burial in landfills.
The Board should continue to provide
technical information on tire uses as an energy source and, if
requested, to partner with interested industry segments to assist in
examining environmental aspects (air emissions and ash
characteristics) at specific sites. [Accomplished through laboratory
services contract. Estimated cost up to $300,000 per year].
Since the 1970s, tires and tire derived fuel have
been burned in a variety of energy recovery units. Advocates point
to extensive regional and national testing that bears out the
position that tires, in a properly run facility, generally burn
cleaner than the coal fuel they usually displace. There are still
environmental groups that express concern for the burning of tires
and the current process of permitting such facilities is very
Given the extreme public health danger associated
with the uncontrolled burning of illegal tire piles, such as the
recent fire near Tracy, it has become a high priority that diversion
of waste tires be increased immediately and illegal tire piles
remediated. The fact that approximately one-half of California’s
diverted waste tires currently go to energy conversion facilities
[cement kilns, Modesto Energy Limited Partnership (MELP),
cogeneration plants) makes it important that consumption be
accomplished with full environmental consideration.
The goal for this area would be to achieve the
utilization of the permitted capacity for the energy conversion
facilities (cogeneration, MELP, and cement kilns) within five years.
End Use Incentives
It is acknowledged that tires from other states
have been in the past (Oregon) or are being currently (Utah) imported
into California because of financial incentives provided by these
states. It is also probable that some California tires are being
displaced in the market because of these imported tires. It has been
suggested that California should provide financial incentives
comparable to those provided by other states to “level the playing
field” with imported tires.
A universal end-use incentive program
should not be established and the current 30 percent incentive to
find markets for tires from cleanups should be discontinued. The
Board should have the option of providing specific incentives to
individual projects (such as paying a premium price for tire shreds
to insure a constant supply for the levee pilot project) on a case by
case basis. [Accomplished through Board action. Estimated cost
$3,000,000 per year.]
The preponderance of the California waste tire
industry opposes the creation of a broad based end-use incentive
program. There are several valid reasons of this opposition. To
insure equity and avoid favoring one segment of the market over
another, all segments of the market would have to be supported,
making the program very expensive. Further, such incentives foster
the creation of marginal businesses that compete with and threaten
the viability of existing, established businesses. Accordingly,
end-use incentive programs created in other states have not provided
sustainable markets for used tires and, to the contrary, have
actually damaged the existing permanent infrastructure.
Scrap Tire Supply for End Use Markets
Currently 15 million scrap tires are going into
landfills (approximately 12 million into monofills, 2.8 million into
ADC). To move the flow of scrap tires from landfills to more
productive uses in recycling or energy conversion, the current market
must be effected in some manner to “free up” tires for
alternative uses. Today it is generally most cost-effective for a
hauler to take a whole or shredded scrap tire to a landfill or
monofill for disposal.
The Infrastructure and Economics section of this
report highlights the interaction of the different elements of the
system. Currently, the hauler is paid when he takes possession of
the tires from the generator. Since the current market has very few
end users willing to pay for the tires, the hauler looks for the
least expensive tipping fee when he is ready to get rid of the tires.
Since the whole system flow is driven by the hauler looking for the
lowest tipping fee, there is considerable competition among those
taking the tires.
As long as the landfill is available as the least
expensive disposal option for the haulers, there is a severe
restriction on the ability to develop alternative markets for
productive end uses, as there will be a shortage of a dependable
supply of scrap tires to feed the expanding market. In an ideal
market, which we may eventually approach, users would have to pay for
the scrap tires they use and low disposal costs at landfills would no
longer be a significant factor in the market.
To make the issue even more complicated, there are
geographic factors that must be considered. For example, in Southern
California there is a very active program to use rubberized asphalt
in city and county highway work, and there are several crumb rubber
producers operating. To arbitrarily encourage the creation of
another crumb producer in this area would potentially damage the
existing infrastructure. On the other hand, in Northern California
there is only one crumb producer and the local road maintenance
organizations are starting to gear up to use more rubberized asphalt
in road work. In this case, it could make sense to encourage the
creation of another producer in order to reduce the costs for the
local market and encourage even greater use of crumb rubber in the
There are many possible approaches to the issue of
tire supply for alternative markets. Options include, but are not
limited to the following:
Do nothing and allow the free
market to decide when, and if, tires should be diverted from
Implement a time phased regional
ban or restriction on landfilling, as the Board determines
alternative regional markets are available.
Require all scrap tires going into
landfills to be used as alternative daily cover and to meet
Set up an escalating surcharge at
monofills and landfills to “level the playing field” between
landfilling and alternative uses.
Cap the number of tires allowed in
landfills (for example, 1 percent of total waste permitted at an
Provide a tax incentive to
haulers, keyed to where they take tires. Tires going to uses higher
on the hierarchy would receive a greater incentive than those going
to lower levels on the hierarchy.
Provide a direct subsidy to
haulers, based on where they take tires.
a direct subsidy to end users, based on a hierarchy of use.
This issue of scrap tire availability for
alternative markets is very complex and affects many segments of the
infrastructure. While there are many possible methods to influence
the flow of scrap tires, the Board can perhaps best exert influence
on the market through support of end use businesses’ capital
investments to increase the use of scrap tires.
The Board can exert influence through
commercialization loans and grants; considering a combination of use
hierarchy, geographic market deficiencies, and requested loan/grant
need for capital investment assistance. By helping a business reduce
capital costs, debt service overhead is reduced and a business would
have more funds available to allow for reduction of tipping fees for
scrap tires. While this is an indirect method of influencing the
flow of tires, it may be the least disruptive on the overall market.
4. Benchmark Study
Five-State Benchmark Study Methodology
VITETTA and Board staff worked together to
determine the comparative states. Criteria for state selection
included the following:
Number of tires generated
annually. In order to provide a complete comparison, it was
decided that two of the four states should have relatively large
waste tire flows (Florida is #2 in the nation, behind California and
Illinois is #5). The other two states should have mid- to
smaller-sized flows (Wisconsin and Arizona).
Fee is charged and goes towards
tire program. Some states—like Pennsylvania—have a tire fee
but then spend it on issues unrelated to tires. This criterion
requires that all the comparative states have a tire fee that is
dedicated to tire activities.
Method of fee collection
varies. While California collects its tire fee from the tire
retailer, at least one of the states (Wisconsin) should collect the
fee in a different manner.
State-sponsored rebate for end
users. In order to get a full picture of the ramifications of
rebates, at least one of the comparative states should have a rebate
program in place for users of waste tires. Wisconsin was
specifically chosen because its rebate program was designed by the
state’s legislature to intervene temporarily into the tire
market—the rebate program sunsetted in 1997.
Number of tires
recovered/recycled. All of the states included in the study
should have recycling rates as high or higher than California.
Method of scrap tire
utilization. There should be a variety of end uses for scrap
tires in the comparative states. In this case, Florida proved to
have the most diverse end uses, with Arizona’s end use primarily
focused on crumb and the Midwestern states on transformation.
decentralization. The goal was to include in the study states
that fell across the spectrum of State versus local government
responsibility. In this case, Arizona was the most decentralized,
with Florida being the second most decentralized. Both Wisconsin
and Illinois have very centralized programs.
Based on discussions with experts at the federal
level and in other states, as well as a review of literature
(including a 1996 Board report and a recent national survey conducted
by the IWMB Market Development Division), VITETTA and the Board
determined the comparative states.
Neither Texas nor New York, #3 and #4 in annual
scrap tire production in the nation, were chosen for the study.
Texas was not chosen because, according to discussion with experts,
Texas’ rebate program resulted in large stockpiles of crumb rubber
for which there are no immediate end uses. New York has no tire fee
and therefore did not meet criteria #2.
A survey was drafted by VITETTA with input from
the Board’s Market Development Division and Permitting and
Enforcement Division. This survey, with a cover letter and a copy of
the IWMB’s October 1998 tire report, was sent to the comparative
states. A copy of the survey is included in the Appendix. During
January and February 1999, VITETTA conducted follow up telephone
interviews with state officials and additional research, as
Benchmark Study Findings
Finding #1. All states reviewed have lower
annual “new” scrap tire flow and smaller stockpiles than
All of the states examined have significantly
lower scrap tire flow and stockpile figures than California. While
that can likely be expected because of California’s large
population, the magnitude of California’s tire challenge—in both
annual flow and stockpiled tires—is significantly larger than any
of the other states reviewed.
Additionally, most states reviewed have
significantly reduced their stockpiles since the inception of the
tire program in that state.
Table 4-1: New scrap tire flow and
stockpiling among states reviewed
scrap tire annual flow
tires prior to tire program inception
tires (currently estimated)
Source: VITETTA survey
Finding #2. All comparative states reviewed have
higher tire fees than California.
All four of the other comparative states reviewed
had higher tire fees than California. Additionally, three of the
four comparative states levy their tire fee on new car tires, in
contrast to California and Illinois where new car tires are exempt
from the tire fee.
Furthermore, the fee in both Florida and Illinois
generated more revenue for the tire program than was generated by
California’s fee. Wisconsin’s fee sunsetted in 1997 but
generated $2.5 million in 1996-97. Arizona’s fee is a percentage
of the tire purchase price, rather than a flat fee, up to $2 per tire
and generates approximately $5 million annually for that state.
Table 4-2: Tire fee and revenues
of tire price,
levied on new car tires
levied at time new car is registered
generated by the fee, 1997-98
Source: VITETTA survey
Finding #3. The method of tire fee collection
appears to affect the cost of collection.
In California, Florida, Illinois, and Arizona, the
tire fee is collected at the time a new tire is purchased. Wisconsin
is the only state that collects the fee at the point of vehicle
registration (when a new vehicle is registered) and has the lowest
collection cost of the five states.
California’s cost of collection is consistent
with the two of the three comparative states that collect the fee via
the tire retailer. Arizona officials report that the state
Department of Revenue does not track the cost to collect the fee from
the state’s 1,300 tire retailers and that any costs for collection
are covered by the department’s budget. Wisconsin’s fee
collection costs were significantly less (less than $50,000 annually)
than any of the other states reviewed.
Table 4-3: Point of fee collection
and cost of collection
of collection (annual)
Source: VITETTA survey
Finding #4. California’s per tire cleanup
costs appear to be consistent with other states reviewed.
For all of the states reviewed (with the exception
of Arizona), average cost per tire for cleanup varied between $1 and
$2. California, with a median cleanup cost of $1.27, falls nearly in
the middle of the spectrum. Arizona Department of Environmental
Quality doesn’t track cleanup costs since cleanups are the
responsibility of the counties but officials there anticipate that
cleanup costs would vary by county and based on the eventual end use
of the tire.
Table 4-4: Average cleanup costs
across states reviewed, 1997-98
per tire cleanup costs
$1 per tire
$1.10 per tire
available—all cleanups done by counties
Source: VITETTA survey
Finding #5. The degree of local government
responsibility for the tire program varies.
In Wisconsin and Illinois, local governments have
little or no role in the state’s scrap tire management program. In
Arizona, local governments have the primary responsibility for the
tire program.California and Florida generally fall in the
middle of the spectrum of local agency responsibility.
In California, some local governments have taken
on the responsibility (through the Board grant programs) of
limited-term inspection, compliance and surveillance activities.
Florida administers local government grants that can be directed
Site cleanup and abatement
Technology and market development
Establishing collection centers
products made with waste tires
In Arizona, counties have complete responsibility
for waste tire cleanup and collection and ensuring disposal or end
use of the tires cleaned up, but the state is responsible for
permitting and enforcement activities.
By delegating additional responsibilities to local
agencies, the opportunity for program variation (i.e., enforcement,
disposal, recycling) increases. For example, in Arizona, some
counties choose to export all tires collected while others landfill
their tires. Because each county is required to handle the tires
collected at its collection facility, counties often contract with
one or more hauler/processor, resulting in tires from one county
being put to a different end use than tires in another county.
Finding #6. Use of transformation as an end use
Every state reviewed had higher recycling rates
than California when transformation was included in the recycling
rate calculation. In Wisconsin and Illinois, almost all of the scrap
tires are used as tire-derived fuel (TDF). Florida transforms nearly
9 million of its 19 million annual tire flow, or nearly 50 percent.
Arizona currently has no transformation facilities
using tire-derived fuel. Of the 4 million scrap tires produced
annually in Arizona, 3 million are processed into crumb that is used
for RAC. The other million tires are either exported to California
Finding #7. States that have local government
tire programs generally fund them through the tire fee.
In Arizona, counties get nearly all of the $5
million collected annually through the tire fee. In Florida, block
grants are made to counties based on the county’s population. In
Arizona, local agencies can raise revenues to pay for tire programs
but, according to Arizona state officials, generally choose not to
and, instead, pay for any extra costs out of the county general fund.
4-5: Local government programs and funding, 1997-98
allocated to local governments
of the total tire program budget
executed by local governments
Inspection, compliance and surveillance
Establishing collection centers
Purchasing waste tire products
Establishment of collection centers
Coordination of collection, hauling and processing
of local discretion with funds
discretion, based on grants applied for
local government discretion with block grant funds
articulated in state statute
Finding #8. Responsibility for market
development activities varies.
While both California and Florida have market
development programs at both the state and local levels (local market
development is funded through state tire fund monies in both states),
most of the market development activity in Wisconsin and Illinois
occurred at the state level. In both these states, state officials
sought out new uses and aggressively court them to locate in the
state. No market development activities occurred at the local level.
In the beginning of Arizona’s program, the state
contracted with a single tire processor to encourage that processor
to locate in the state. The state of Arizona currently oversees no
market development programs. According to officials there, it is
unlikely that local governments are undertaking any market
development activities with tire fee revenue.
Finding #9. All states ban landfilling of whole
scrap tires, while only one state bans tires completely from
Since 1995, Wisconsin has prohibited the
landfilling of scrap tires. Arizona, Florida and California ban the
landfilling of whole scrap tires and require that scrap tires
be shredded into smaller pieces prior to being landfilled. Illinois
allows processed tires to be landfilled under certain circumstances.
Table A-1: Sample Optimum Waste Tire
Program Budget (in thousands
Program Support. Includes five new
positions for enforcement and remediation added through 1998-1999 BCP
and 10 new positions (two for enforcement, two for market
development, four for waste tire manifest management, and two for
public affairs to administer the public information/education
Fee Collection. Estimate of cost of fee
collection from 400 wholesalers.
Laboratory Services. This is an on-demand
contract to be used for miscellaneous projects (leachate
measurements, specific environmental concerns, etc.)
Research and Development. $500,000 for
00/01 to measure environmental impacts of major tire fires. $500,000
in 01/02 to measure ability to recycle rubberized asphalt.
$1,000,000 per year for development of new technologies to break down
tires (debeader, pyrolysis, devulcanization, etc.). $500,000 in 00/01
and 2001/02 to support a partnership with the tire manufacturers to
develop techniques to increase the use of recycled rubber in new tire
Information/Education. Includes $350,000
for public school educational materials on dangers of illegal
disposal and proper tire maintenance. $150,000 for annual tire
conference. $500,000 for development of multimedia messages on tire
maintenance and illegal disposal. $1,500,000 radio air time to
broadcast message. $3,000,000 for TV time to air message. $500,000
for amnesty days.
California Highway Patrol. Enforcement of
hauler regulations through use of off-duty patrol officers, special
road blocks, search for illegal tire piles, and sting operations.
Fire Training. $350,000 in 00/01 to update
training materials. $200,000 in 02/03 to do continuation training
for the fire community.
Local Cleanup. Cost for reimbursing local
governments for cleaning up local tire piles of 500-5000 tires. For
2000/01 and 2001/02 assumes 2,000,000 tires per year at a disposal
cost of $3.25 per tire. 2,000,000 X 3.25 = $6,500,000.
For 2002/03 and beyond, the assumption is that 12
percent of tires are illegally disposed of and half of these require
local government remediation: 35,000,000 X .12 X .50 = 2,100,000.
Remediation costs are 2,100,000 X $3.25 = $6,825,000.
Local Enforcement. Cost for LEAs to
inspect tire generators to check compliance with minimum standards,
number of scrap tires stored, and tire manifests. 10,000 generators
to be visited each year at $100 per visit.
Major Pile Cleanup. Cost to clean up the
35 illegal tire piles larger than 5,000 tires as well as funding for
piles currently in the program.
on current remediation list 7,900,000
in 35 stockpiles 4,100,000
funds needed to remediate sites on current list $2,900,000
needed to remediate 35 stockpiles ($2.50 X 4,100,00) $10,250,000
to remediate Oxford $4,000,000
To clean up piles in 2 years: $17,150,000 ÷ 2 =
$8,575,000 per year
Civil Engineering. $2,500,000 per year for
Northern and Southern California civil engineering centers
($1,250,000 each). $250,000 for development of highway uses for tire
shreds, $20,000 for Caltrans RAC guidelines in 00/01; $100,000 for
levee project and $100,000 for septic field project in 01/02, 02/03.
Commercialization. To be used for grants
or loans, as determined by the Board, to aid transition of
technologies and/or products from research into full production. Can
also be used to aid expansion of existing commercial enterprise.
Example: development of a tire debeader to remove bead from auto
tires so they can be processed for cogeneration facilities.
Market Incentives. To be used to “level
the playing field” in cases where short term market conditions
threaten the viability of key waste tire processors or end users.
Example: provide temporary assistance for a producer of a product
that directly competes with a product being subsidized by another
state or nation.
Procurement. Direct assistance in the
purchase of products. Example: Joining with state agencies to defray
the costs of purchasing wheelchair ramps and mats made from ground up
The tire manufacturers have expressed their
interest in the scrap tire issue by establishing the “Scrap Tire
Management Council.” This council is an outgrowth of the Rubber
Manufacturers Association and speaks for the industry in this area.
Following is background information directly quoted from a handout
from the council.
Scrap Tire Management Council Background
“The Scrap Tire Management Council was organized
in 1990 by the North American tire manufacturing industry to be its
public voice on matters dealing with scrap tires. The Council was
organized as a part of the Rubber Manufacturers Association, the
principal U. S. trade association representing manufacturers of tires
and other rubber products. In establishing the Council, the tire
industry sought to create an organization that would have the
expertise to assist in building strong end user markets for scrap
tires, would assist in developing responsible scrap tire regulation,
and would promote remediation of scrap tire stock piles.
“The tire industry had been active in the years
preceding 1990 when many states were enacting scrap tire laws, or
were actively considering such laws. The tire industry came to
appreciate, however, that there was no organization that could assist
the states implement these laws, or to help the growing scrap tire
industry determine the best ways to market scrap tires as a raw
material for other end uses. This concern led to the establishment
of the Scrap Tire Management Council to be this organization.
“The Council has always had a strategic goal,
originally set at developing sound end use markets for 50 percent of
annually generated scrap tires within five years. As the markets for
scrap tire have expanded since 1990, this strategic goal has also
been modified. The current statements of the Council's strategic
(1) The sound management of 100 percent of all new
scrap tires generated annually; (2) The growth of sound end use
markets for as many scrap tires as possible; and (3) Remediation of
existing stockpiles in as short a period of time as is practical.
“Operating with limited staff, the Council has
focused its efforts on those market segments that appear to have the
best opportunity to utilize large volumes of tires. These end use
markets must also be environmentally sound and economically cost
effective. The key markets that have been identified are the use of
tire derived fuel in appropriate kilns and boilers, the use of scrap
tire material in civil engineering applications, and the use of scrap
tire derived material in further manufacture, principally as ground
rubber. The Council also recognizes that not all tires will have
markets, either now or in the future, for a variety of factors. In
these cases, the Council promotes sound management of scrap tires to
eliminate the adverse consequences of improper disposal.
“The Council's major activities are in the area
of market development. It also works on education and communication,
information development, legislative liaison, industry liaison and
monitoring new technology.
“Over the years, the Council has undertaken many
projects and promoted several ideas that are designed to help expand
all sound scrap tire markets. Just a few of these projects are listed
on a separate page.
“A key feature of the Scrap Tire Management
Council's activities from its inception has been to work with State
regulatory agencies both to develop sound and effective scrap tire
regulations, and to promote effective markets. States both large and
small have sought out the Council's assistance and it has tried to be
as responsive as possible.
“As always, the Scrap Tire Management Council is
directed in its activities by the constant guidance and leadership of
its member companies. The tire manufacturing companies are the true
heart of the Council, and oversee all aspects of it programs. Council
programs and initiatives reflect the consensus judgement of the tire
“The tire industry through the Council will
continue to assist all segments of the scrap tire industry until the
need for that effort has subsided.”
Scrap Tire Management Council Activities in
The following was submitted as specific efforts of
the Council in California.
“1. California Integrated Waste Management Board
staff members were invited to, and participated in the first Scrap
Tire Management Council national conference held in Arlington, VA in
late 1991. This was an invitation only conference for state scrap
tire program administrators. Representatives from 38 states
“2. IWMB staff members also participated in the
second STMC Conference in Dallas in 1992. Again, participation was on
an invitation only basis.
“3. Scrap Tire Management Council
representatives have been invited to, and have made, presentations at
all three of the statewide scrap tire conferences that the IWMB has
“4. STMC was invited to, and made, presentations
at both of the Crumb Rubber Workshops sponsored by the IWMB in 1997.
“5. STMC organized the scrap tire recycling
program segment at the California Resource Recovery Association's
1997 annual meeting in Monterey, CA.
“6. STMC staff provided technical assistance to
the California Fire Marshall's office
during the development of the scrap tire fire
fighting training program, "Rings of Fire."
“7. STMC provided access to all it files of air
emissions test results to Dames & Moore, the contractor who
conducted the latest study of Tire Derived Fuel air emissions for the
IWMB. STMC files provided the majority of the technical data use for
“8. STMC has provided on-site seminars for
several California cement kilns interested in using scrap tires as
supplemental fuel, including California Portland Cement, Mojave;
Mitsubishi Cement, Lucerne; Riverside Cement, Riverside. In addition,
air emissions data was provided to Southwestern Portland,
Victorville, and to the Mojave AQMD. STMC also participated in a
public hearing held by the Mojave AQMD.
“9. STMC has regularly been invited to provide
comments on proposed legislation and regulations dealing with scrap
tires. STMC staff has regularly participated in meetings and hearings
of the IWMB and various committees dealing with scrap tire issues.
“10. The tire industry, through the STMC, has
participated extensively in the work of the current Task Force, and
has provided extensive industry comments.”
Specific Program Evaluations
Permitting and Enforcement
Major and Minor Waste Tire Facility Permits
One goal of the tire program is to stabilize and
monitor the storage of tires. The purpose of the Board permitting
program is to identify and classify waste tire facilities(WTF).
State law requires any person storing more than
500 waste tires to comply with state regulations governing tire
storage and obtain a WTF permit from the Board. All facilities must
meet Board-specified standards for fire safety and vector control.
There are two types of permits, based on the number of tires stored:
Minor waste tire facilities—those
with between 500 and 4,999 tires.
Major waste tire facilities—those
with 5,000 or more tires. In addition to a permit, a major waste
tire facility must establish financial assurance mechanisms for
closure, liability insurance for environmental pollution and a
Waste tire facilities can have one of the
following three classifications:
Permitted (has obtained a waste
tire facility permit from the Board).
Unpermitted (illegal facility that
is not currently permitted by the Board).
Today Board regulations and State statutes provide
six types of exclusions from the permitting requirements:
Sealed, movable containers
(commonly a truck or trailer).
Tire dealers and auto dismantlers
(with less than 1,500 stored tires).
Less than 5,000 tires stored (but
unable to hold water) for agricultural purposes.
Permitted solid waste disposal
Tire retreaders with less than
3,000 stored tires.
Any tire pile containing less than 500 tires is
not considered to be a waste tire facility and does not need to
obtain a permit. In June 1998, the Board changed the regulations
governing permit exemptions because, according to a Board memo:
“Many of the facilities operating
with these [recycling business, indoor storage, and general
exclusion] types of exclusions are not meeting the conditions for
their regulatory exclusions.”
As estimated by Board staff for 1998-99, there are
280 identified major and minor waste tire facilities: 80 major waste
tire facilities and 200 minor facilities. Of the 80 major tire
facilities, seven are permitted (8.8 percent) and eight (10 percent)
are excluded. The remaining facilities (65 facilities, or 81
percent) are applying for permits or subject to enforcement action by
Of the 200 minor facilities, 25 (12.5 percent) are
permitted and 25 (12.5 percent) are excluded; the rest (150
facilities, or 75 percent) are applying for permits or subject to
enforcement action by the Board.
Despite the small percentage of permitted
facilities reported by the Board, generally the number of exclusions
has decreased since 1994-95, while the number of permitted waste tire
facilities has increased (or held constant). As of January 1999,
only 33 major and minor waste tire facilities had exclusions.
State-Funded Cleanup Activities (since 1995-96)
On August 31, 1994, the Board implemented the
State-funded tire pile cleanup program, officially known as the Waste
Tire Stabilization and Abatement Program, with the goal of
eliminating tire piles that pose a threat to public safety or the
environment. After the responsible party fails to comply with a
Board order to clean up the tire pile, State law allows the Board to
spend Tire Fund monies to abate tire piles. The Board contracts for
the cleanup of its sites.
Since 1995, the Board has removed over 9.8 million
tires from 28 sites at an unweighted average removal cost of $.54 per
tire, for a total cost of nearly $5.5 million.
The total number of tires remediated through this
effort represents 21 percent of the estimated 45 million tires
stockpiled throughout the state when the State created the tire
program in 1990. The cost per tire removal varies greatly between
sites; generally, the more tires removed from a single site, the
lower the cleanup cost per tire, as detailed in the table below.
Table C-1: Average cost per tire for
abatement, based on project size
of tires remediated
cost per tire
million and up
million to 1,999,999
To date, the most
expensive site to abate in terms of cost per tire was the South
Valley View #1 and #2 Waste Tire Facility in San Bernardino County,
in 1998, at $5.77 per tire. The least expensive cleanup was the 2
million tires removed in 1995 from the Choperena Waste Tire Facility
at a cost of $.35 a tire.
The largest site remediated is the current,
two-stage cleanup of the Oxford Waste Tire Facility. Since 1998, the
State has sponsored cleanup at Oxford WTF at a cost per tire of $.40
per tire (2.5 million tires in 1997) and $.49 per tire (1.7 million
tires, 1998 to date) for a total of 4.2 million tires removed. The
smallest site cleanup, Wilson Waste Tire Site in 1995, was the second
most expensive at a cost of $2.81 per tire for the 1,600 tires
The majority (66 percent) of the sites remediated
in the last three years each cost less than $100,000. It is unknown
what role the geographic relationship between sites and the eventual
end use of the tires helped to reduce the cost of abatement. While
the number of sites remediated each year has remained almost
constant, the cost of cleanup has varied significantly depending on
the number of large projects undertaken that year.
Table C-2: Annual cost per tire for
# Tires Removed
Cost per Tire per Year
The figures for total
tires removed represent an anticipated outcome rather than an actual
outcome. In its October 1998 Overview of California’s Waste
Tire Program, the Board reported:
“…the Board has allocated $4.9
million for its waste tire stabilization and abatement program. Of
this amount, over $2.6 million has been spent on the cleanup of
nearly 5 million tires at 26 sites around the state. The remaining
$2.3 million is encumbered and will be used to support future cleanup
Of the 9.8 million removed since 1995, 84 percent
went to a productive end use and 16 percent to landfills. With the
exception of 1996, most, if not all, abated tires have been sent to
productive end uses.
In Table C-3, tires removed from the
State-sponsored cleanups either went to “productive end use” or
to “disposal.” Productive end use means the tires were combusted
for fuel or energy supplement, recycled or otherwise reused; disposal
means the tires were landfilled.
Table C-3: End use for tires removed
as a result of State cleanup, 1995-98
end use (%)
# of tires removed
While the goal of the Board program is to
stabilize all unsafe or environmentally hazardous tire piles until
abatement can be completed, two large tire pile fires and several
small blazes have occurred since the beginning of the program.
In May of 1996, approximately 1.5 million tires
burned at the Choperena waste tire site and 7 million tires have been
consumed at the fire currently burning at the Royster facility.
These two fires alone consumed an estimated 8.5 million tires, almost
as many as were remediated by the Board since the inception of the
cleanup program. Together, State-funded cleanup and tire fires
eliminated 18.39 million tires from state stockpiles.
Tire Hauler Program (since 1995)
The purpose of the waste tire hauler program is to
track the flow tires from waste tire facilities to productive end use
or disposal. The goal of the program is to prevent illegal
stockpiling or dumping of tires. The program began in 1995.
State law requires every person who transports
five or more scrap tires to hold a valid tire hauler registration,
post a $10,000 bond and observe the requirements of the waste tire
hauler manifest system. Registered tire haulers must register
annually with the Board, possess manifests during transport,
transport only to authorized facilities and return the completed
manifest to the generator of the scrap tires, if requested. State
law requires persons receiving tires from unregistered haulers to
report the hauler to the Board.
The hauler program consists of two separate
components: registration and enforcement.
IWMB Permitting and Enforcement Division staff was
able to provide program information for 1997 and 1998; however,
aggregated data for 1995 and 1996 is not available because the
information system used to keep the records did not store historical
example, if a hauler had registered in 1995 and renewed the
registration in 1996, the computer would replace and erase the 1995
registration with the 1996 record. According to Board staff, hauler
registrations are now kept on a new system capable of storing
The number of companies registering vehicles
increased from 579 to 900, and the number of registered vehicles
increased from 3,209 to 8,000 over the four years of the program. The
large increase in registrations between 1997 and 1998 was due to the
registration of several fleet haulers with large numbers of trucks.
Table C-5: Tire hauler program
of annual registered haulers
of annual hauler vehicle registrations
of renewals cancelled or denied
of unreg. haulers reported
of investigated unreg. haulers
of stops by CHP
Waste tire hauler
registrations are renewed each January. "Total"
represents the cumulative number of registered companies and
vehicles, in recognition that one individual company most likely
registered every year.
Enforcement of the tire
hauler program requirements resulted in the cancellation of 133
permits. 70 renewals were cancelled.
In 1997 and 1998, 235 unregistered haulers were
reported and investigated. The Board sent “Notice of Violation”
letters to all reported unregistered haulers along with applications
for registering as a waste tire hauler. The Board could not provide
an estimate for the total number of unregistered haulers or the
overall number of persons who reported receiving tires from
A review of the Board’s 1998 Overview Report
California’s Waste Tire Program found that more than 3,000
persons had reported receiving tires from unregistered haulers since
In 1997-98, the Board entered into a $200,000
interagency agreement with the California Highway Patrol (CHP) to
conduct training for all 6,500 CHP officers statewide, as well as
local peace officers. Between 1997 and 1998, CHP stops of tire
haulers increased from 13 to 50, but the figure is likely
underreported and the effect of CHP activity is unknown.
In 1998, the Board provided the CHP with a
videotaped training session and brochures about the tire hauler
program. Board staff anticipates that the training video and
brochures will increase enforcement activity by the CHP.
Generally, activity in terms of the increased
number of registrations and enforcement of the tire hauler program
requirements is rising.
In addition to the identification and
classification of tire storage sites, the Board is also charged with
the responsibility of inspecting identified facilities and enforcing
certain safety regulations governing facilities. The goal of the
inspection and enforcement programs is to bring all tire storage
facilities into compliance with State regulations.
The inspection process includes the determination
of the number of tires at each facility, site security and access,
fire prevention measures and vector control measures.
For violators of the tire facility requirements,
the Board’s process of enforcement has six steps:
Step 1: A
“Letter of Violation” is issued and the facility is given six
weeks to submit a plan on how it will come into compliance.
After six weeks, a “Warning Letter” is issued and the facility is
given three weeks to submit a compliance plan.
Step 3: A
formal “Cleanup and Abatement” order is made by the Board and
three months are granted for submitting a compliance plan.
If the facility still has not complied, the case is referred to the
Office of Administrative Hearings.
The case against the noncompliant facility is referred to the
District Attorney and a criminal report of investigation is prepared.
Before the case against a facility is handed over to the District
Attorney, steps one through four usually take a total of five months
and one week to complete.
VITETTA found no data on the Board’s inspection
and enforcement activities before 1994. Generally, information
regarding the number of sites inspected was fragmented and difficult
Since 1994, both Board and local enforcement
agencies (LEA) inspected 342 sites. More sites in Northern
California (225) were inspected than in Southern California (117).
A site inspector is now permanently located in
Southern California. Until October 1998, both site inspectors were
based in Northern California. Over the last five years, an average
of 73 percent of the facilities inspected complied with State storage
requirements. As measured by Board, the annual rate of compliance
dropped to 68 percent in 1997. Overall, sites inspected by LEAs had
a lower rate of compliance than those inspected by State inspectors
While criminal complaints remain steady,
administrative complaints rose in 1997 and then leveled off in 1998.
The number of cleanup and abatement orders issued by the Board
increased at a faster rate between 1994-1998 than administrative
complaints issued by the Office of Administrative Hearings.
Between December 30, 1996 and January 8, 1998, 44
tire penalties in the amount of $731,868 were assessed for
judgements. As of January 1999, only $17,900 of the tire penalties
has been paid to the State. This reflects the unique problems
associated with scrap tires. Many of the smaller operators are
virtually without resources and unable to pay any fines. There is
also often a problem even finding the individual against whom there
is a judgement—flight is a common occurrence. Finally, there is
the problem of inadequate legal authority to convert the
administrative award into a property lien.
The largest penalty levied by the courts was
$228,250 against Wenbury Environmental Company, Ltd. of which no
amount has been paid to the State; the smallest penalty was $200
against Timothy Fisher, which has been paid in full. Prosecution of
tire penalty cases is dependent on the time, resources, and the
willingness of the district attorney to pursue the case.
As a result of Board inspection enforcement
activities, approximately 3.6 million tires were removed. However,
the number of tires is an aggregate figure for the five years of data
kept on the inspection and enforcement program.
Approximately 1 million tires are removed as a
result of direct enforcement each year. However, Board staff could
not produce more exact annual estimates. Although 3.6 million is an
estimate of the total number of tires removed since 1994, the number
of tires removed may be as high as 4 million. In 1998, Board staff
estimated that 333,000 tires had been removed from January through
October of 1998.
Local Government Cleanup Matching Grants (since
The goal of the cleanup matching grant program is
to create local partnerships to facilitate the removal, transport,
and disposal/reuse of waste tires from legacy tire piles and piles
exceeding 500 tires.
Generally, grant participants “match” the
Board contribution by 50 percent (either through revenue payments or
in-kind services). All recipients of the cleanup matching grants
must also be recipients of a waste tire enforcement grant in order to
ensure that the jurisdiction’s tire issues are being approached at
both points in the process—production of “new” scrap tires and
cleanup of stockpiled tires.
In 1996-97, the only grant awarded was to the
County of Sonoma, which was subsequently canceled, with no money
allocated to the grantee.
In 1997-98 (effectively, the first year of the
program), the Board allocated $174,754.69 for eight cleanup grants to
local governments, with the total grant program budget estimated at
$267,453 (see Table C-6).
Local government “matches” (either in-kind
services or cash) totaled $96,168.64. Board staff projects that the
local government cleanup grants will result in a total of 118,110
Estimated cost per tire cleaned up varies by
grant, with a high of $17.70 per tire (Yuba-Sutter Regional Waste
Management Authority) and a low of $1.01 (Acacia Tire Site). Average
cost per tire is projected to be $2.26. This is more than both the
local government amnesty grant cleanups (average cost per tire $1.82)
and State-funded cleanups ($1.27 median per tire cleanup cost).
However, because the local government cleanup
matching grants were generally used for smaller piles (average
estimated cleanup in 1997-98 was 14,000 tires), it is reasonable to
expect slightly higher per tire cleanup costs. When compared to
smaller cleanup projects by the State (average cost of five projects
less than 10,000 tires was $2.90), the cost of the cleanup funded by
the grant program is reasonable.
Table C-6: Local government cleanup
matching grant program participants, 1997-98
# of tires to be removed
per tire (estimated)
Waste Tire Site
Works Dept., Loyalton landfill
Fire Protection District
(avg. local match - estimated)
(avg. cost per tire - estimated)
Local match includes both
cash and in-kind services
Cost per tire depends
on a number of variables, including distance the tires must be
transported to be disposed or recycled, difficulty of reaching the
site, number of personnel needed and pay rate (i.e., use of local
conservation corps staff versus use of a professional contractor).
Because final reports for the 1997-98 grants will
not be available until later in 1999, all amounts in Table C-6 are
estimated by the Board. However, based on the projected figures, the
average cost per tire of remediation is estimated to be between $1
and $5 per tire. Therefore, based on projections, this program
appears to be a reasonably cost effective method of performing small
to medium-sized cleanups. Upon final reconciliation of the projected
amounts awarded with the actual amount paid and the actual amount of
tires remediated, the Board can determine how close the actual totals
are to estimates.
In 1997-98, all of the jurisdictions included
evaluation as a component in their applications, with many of them
listing the following evaluation criteria:
Removal of tires from a targeted
disposal of tires cleaned up.
Some project applicants expanded their scope of
evaluation to also include:
Reduction of illegal tire dumping
in the area.
Number of citizen complaints
regarding illegal dumping of waste tires.
Local Government Enforcement Grants (since
Over the past two years, the Board has awarded
$225,000 for a total of 14 waste tire enforcement grants. This grant
program provides local governments with the resources to monitor and
take certain enforcement action against persons stockpiling tires
illegally. The intent of these grants is to provide short-term,
one-time funding for surveillance, inspection and compliance.
There are two grant options available to local
Option #1, Inspection and Compliance,
involves inspections of waste tire facilities (WTF) that accept or
store more than 500 waste tires at one location. The intent of the
inspection and compliance activities undertaken by the grantee is to
develop and implement an effective inspection and compliance program
at the local enforcement agency (LEA) level which will provide
guidance to facility operators regarding operating requirements.
Additionally, Option #1 includes the responsibility for the local
government to, if necessary, take the initial enforcement action
necessary to remediate threats to the public health and safety and
the environment. If a local government chooses Option #1, it must
also perform the activities in Option #2.
Option #2, Surveillance, involves local
government grantees conducting WTF surveys of tire dealers and auto
dismantlers which accept or store waste tires on site. The intent of
this activity is to reinforce tire dealers’ and auto dismantlers’
responsibility to use registered waste tire haulers for waste tire
removal and to maintain waste tire manifests that document waste tire
removal. In addition to providing to the Board those tire dealers
and auto dismantlers that are or are not in compliance with
requirements, the grantee will also identify and report sites that
may be in violation of WTF permit requirements. The Board provides
survey sheets for local personnel to gather information at the WTF
1996-97 Grant Recipients Four
applicants applied, all of which were awarded 1996-1997 local
enforcement grants for a total of $110,031. The notice of funds
available (NOFA) was sent to approximately 14 LEAs throughout the
state. Board staff determined to which LEAs the NOFA should be sent.
Of the four applicants, two completed
surveillance/compliance and inspection activities (Tulare County LEA
and Riverside County LEA), while two completed surveillance
activities only (Imperial County LEA and Yuba-Sutter LEA).
Table C-7: Results of local
government enforcement grants, 1996-97
# of tires remediated
Inspection and compliance
106 WTF sites)
guidance to WTF operators
initial enforcement action
notice of violation issued)
WTFs and establish database
list for a total of 106, down from 138 on original list)
200 WTFs to original list of 250 for total of 450 sites
Review of the final reports from the 1996-97
grantees indicated that, in some cases, it is unclear whether certain
grantees completed all of the tasks outlined in the original grant
description mailed to applicants.
A number of the 1996-97 grantee final reports
indicate that certain facilities, including tire dealers, were
referred to the Board for further enforcement activity. All of the
referrals from LEAs have been entered into the Board’s computerized
solid waste tracking system and are receiving appropriate follow up
action from Board staff.
1997-98 Grant Recipients In 1997-98,
the Board awarded a total of $412,014 to 10 cities, counties and
LEAs. In 1997-98, the NOFA was sent to all local jurisdictions.
Board staff expects to begin to receive final reports on these grants
in early 1999.
A preliminary review of the 1997-98 grants with
Board staff indicates that only one grant—to the San Diego County
LEA for $95,460 for inspection/compliance and surveillance—was
problematic. Because of staff changes at San Diego County, the grant
became less of a priority for the county. The funds continue to be
available for the next three years, although Board staff is unsure
whether San Diego County will begin its grant-related activities
within that period of time.
Table C-8: Local government
enforcement grant program recipients, 1997-98
Grantees As part of their final reports, the grantees
included suggestions for improving the tire program, including
recommending that the Board:
Inform the LEAs that problems with non-complying
regional tire dealers (that cover multiple jurisdictions) can be
forwarded to the Board for assistance or action.
Provide a formal training at the onset of the
program so that every jurisdiction implements the [grant] program in
similar manner. Most LEAs do not routinely work with the waste tire
hauler registration regulations.
Additionally, a number of grant recipients
expressed the importance of ongoing inspection to ensure compliance.
Fire Safety Training Program (since 1993-94)
In fiscal year 1993-94, the Board entered into a
$350,000 interagency agreement with the Office of the State Fire
Marshall (OSFM) to develop a tire fire training program for the
state’s local fire authorities (including paid and volunteer forces
at the city and county levels). The goal of the training was to
provide local fire personnel with an understanding of the unique
technical approaches to tire pile fires.
Generally, local fire agencies handle smaller tire
fires, with larger pile fires requiring the coordination of “mutual
aid” (including human resources and equipment). This coordination
generally occurs through the Office of Emergency Services (OES),
which coordinated the response to the Royster tire pile fire in
The 1993-94 training program budget of $350,000
was expended for:
A research project with UC
Berkeley to determine the appropriate separation distance between
scrap tire piles.
Production of a 40-minute training
video regarding fighting tire pile fires distributed to registered
tire fire instructors.
Drafting, designing and publishing
3,000 training manuals for local agency fire officials.
A survey of the fire service
community identifying illegal tire pile storage sites.
Ten train-the-trainer classes
delivered across the state regarding optimal methods of handling
tire pile fires.
In 1996-97, the Board allocated an additional
$100,000 to the OSFM for purposes of updating the original training
curriculum and conducting additional training for fire officials who
participated in the original training program. The IWMB then decided
to temporarily suspend the grant, pending additional research on the
impact of tire fire smoke on air quality. That research was never
undertaken and the tire fire safety training effort was not
Both the International Association of Fire Chiefs
and the Federal Emergency Management Agency have produced information
regarding scrap tire storage and scrap tire fires, neither of which
is as extensive as the training funded by the Board.
The OSFM provided a final report to the Board on
October 1, 1994. The interagency agreement (IAA) between the Board
and the OSFM did not contain provisions for long-term evaluation of
the training program.
However, based on the final report, the following
occurred as a result of the program:
A total of 52 classes were
scheduled or delivered by OSFM personnel, with 10 train-the-trainer
classes delivered and five additional conference workshops
115 local fire personnel
participated in the training classes.
66 local fire personnel who
completed the train-the-trainer program registered with OSFM to
teach the class to other local fire personnel.
136 State and local fire service
organizations had at least one member attend an OSFM tire fire
976 fire departments were provided
the survey, with 289 responding.
As a result of the survey, an
additional 116 illegal tire pile sites were identified.
of the tire fire manual to approximately 2,800 fire personnel
Local fire agencies can adopt national or State
standards as local ordinances that then bind activities within their
jurisdiction. The Board has promulgated regulations and requirements
for local fire officials to follow when they inspect tire piles.
However, local fire agencies have no legal requirement to enforce the
Board regulations and, instead, generally rely on either the Uniform
Fire Code (copyrighted by the Western Fire Chiefs Association) or the
National Fire Protection Association (NFPA) requirements related to
tire pile storage.
It is unclear whether:
The training program impacted the
way that local governments deal with tire pile fires.
If local enforcement of tire pile
fire codes are more strictly enforced as a result of the training
The initial local fire officials
who attended the training, in turn trained local personnel.
Rubberized Asphalt Concrete (RAC) (since 1991)
The Board has funded a number of rubberized
asphalt concrete (RAC) projects since 1991, many of them out of the
Market Development Division’s Tire Recycling Grant Program. The
goal of RAC projects is to create a productive end use for scrap
tires. RAC is one of the largest potential users of scrap tires in
The Market Development Division has partnered with
both State and local agencies to facilitate the use of RAC, as
Table C-9: Board-funded RAC
of Tires Used
quality testing at RAC project sites
staff resources loaned to Caltrans for RAC project
Tire Recycling Grants
of Huntington Beach
City of Los Angeles
16 test strip
Tire Recycling Grant
Tire Recycling Grants
Tire Recycling Grants
of Garden Grove
of Agoura Hills
Tire Recycling Grants
Francisco City and County
Los Angeles RAC Technology
IWMB, LA RAC Technology Center, Caltrans
The majority of the Tire Recycling Grants to local
governments and private businesses were for the construction or
re-surfacing of roads with RAC or experimental uses of RAC. In
1996-97, grants to local governments included uses of RAC in the
Great Highway in San Francisco as well as repaving of the American
River Parkway Bicycle Trail in Sacramento.
Tires remediated per project are available for
grant years 1992-93 through 1994-95 (indicated by the shading in
Table C-8). RAC grant projects undertaken after 1994-95 may result
in significant numbers of scrap tires used, but final reports were
not available for grants after 1994-95.
To date, the Board has awarded a little over
$1,000,000 to Caltrans for four projects. In 1991, the Board funded
the purchase of a rheometer by Caltrans, which is designed to test
the liquid RAC binder material to determine which binder will have
the highest performance. No tires were remediated as a direct result
of the purchase of the equipment, although the rheometer may help
facilitate the use of RAC by Caltrans.
There continue to be concerns about the air
quality effects of RAC application on workers as RAC is applied at
higher material temperatures than conventional asphalt paving
material. In order to address these concerns, the Board allocated,
in 1991, allocated $200,000 to Caltrans to work with the Air
Resources Board to conduct ambient air quality testing at RAC sites.
The study was never conducted because Caltrans failed to choose a
testing site prior to the expiration of the grant funds. Caltrans
later conducted some smaller ambient air testing at RAC sites but
those tests were “not comparable” to the proposed State Air
Resources Board (ARB) study, according to Board staff.
In 1992-93, the Board “loaned” a Board staff
person to Caltrans for 14 months who was charged with compiling a
database of all RAC projects (funding for this project was authorized
by the Board in 1991-92). The purpose of the database was to give
Caltrans a more accurate assessment of the success or failure of RAC
projects to date and the circumstances which contributed to success
The database was compiled and included all
Caltrans RAC projects constructed through 1992 and information such
as the project’s RAC supplier, rubber contractors, project
contractor, temperature at the project site during application and
number of workers at the site.
In 1992-93, the Board allocated $500,000 to
Caltrans to fund the application of RAC test sections on State Route
16 near Woodland. The purpose of the test was to allow Caltrans to
study the performance, costs and benefits of using different types of
RAC mixes over a period of time. Caltrans installed the test section
on July 7, 1993.
The only report on file with the Board from
Caltrans is dated June 5, 1995, which states that “annual review
reports” will be submitted to the Board from Caltrans. At the time
of this study, Board staff did not have on file any other reports
from Caltrans regarding the RAC project. Caltrans was to observe the
test sections until the sections failed, and then determine what
caused the failure.
The Los Angeles RAC Technology Center ($1,000,000)
is discussed and evaluated later in this report.
Caltrans Use of Rubberized Asphalt Concrete
Caltrans and local officials use RAC for repaving
and resurfacing because it is, according to the LA RAC Technology
“Cost effective when used
appropriately, provides a long lasting, durable pavement surface that
resists reflective cracking, has excellent skid resistance, reduces
tire noise and retains a “new” look longer than conventional
The Board is interested in RAC because it is one
of the largest potential “recycling” uses for scrap tires in
California - a 2-inch thick RAC resurfacing project can use more than
2,000 scrap tires per lane mile.
RAC has been used in California since the 1960s.
The Federal Highway Administration has previously required states to
use asphalt paving materials containing recycled rubber and other
recycled materials, as mandated by the Intermodal Surface
Transportation Efficiency Act (ISTEA). In 1993-94, the U.S. Senate
declared a moratorium on the RAC mandate because of concerns over
utilizing RAC in areas of the country that experience extreme
Caltrans has been using RAC since 1980 and, from
1980 through 1998, the agency used a total of 2,458,930 tons of RAC.
Based on the formula developed by the Rubber Pavements Association,
this translates into approximately 4.5 million scrap tires recycled.
The use of RAC by Caltrans has changed over time. In 1996, the
greatest amounts of projects were undertaken, with a total of 44
projects, 12 of them in District 10 alone. Overall, Districts 11 and
12 had the highest number of RAC projects—62 and 29, respectively.
Districts 11 and 2 had the greatest amount of RAC used over all their
projects, with a total of 1.85 million tires recycled out of a total
of 4.5 million tires recycled total.
C-10: Use of RAC by Caltrans, 1980–May 98
of tires recycled
attempts to mandate the use of RAC by Caltrans have been made since
the early 1990s, including AB 375 (Firestone) in 1997 and AB 2718
(Bornstein) in 1994. Neither bill was approved by the Legislature.
Both the Rubber
Pavements Association and Caltrans object to RAC use mandates. The
Rubber Pavements Association objects on the basis that mandating RAC
calls into question the integrity of the product; Caltrans objects
because the agency does not want to be
required to use a
product when its use might not be appropriate. Caltrans estimates
that RAC is currently used in 10 to12 percent of its projects.
According to the Rubber Pavements Association, Caltrans could
potentially use RAC in up to 40 percent of its projects.
The Rubber Pavements Association, the Board, and
Caltrans have formed a Rubber Pavement Team which is working to
promote RAC within Caltrans through workshops and other educational
programs for Caltrans employees.
Los Angeles RAC Technology Center (since
Asphalt Concrete Technology Center was founded on July 1, 1997. The
mission of the center is to promote the use of crumb rubber from
scrap tires in roadway rehabilitation projects as a cooperative
effort by the County of Los Angeles and the Board.
Center program goals include:
Increasing the use of crumb rubber
from scrap tires by providing information and services to public
agencies within California at no charge.
Undertaking outreach services, such as regional workshops and
one-on-one conferences to acquaint city and county officials with
the advantages of RAC.
The Center is undertaking a two-pronged approach
to its goals:
education efforts targeted at local government decision-makers to
influence their use of RAC in local projects.
Implementing two local government
grant programs which provide a total of $400,000 ($200,000 each) to
provide locals with the resources to hire consultants or use
in-house staff to provide the necessary expertise regarding:
The costs of undertaking
deflection testing (to ensure that RAC is appropriate for the job
the local government is considering).
quality control in relation to RAC application at the job site.
Lynn Nicholson, a retired County of Los Angeles
engineer, serves as the part-time program director. Staff resources
from within the County of Los Angeles are utilized on an as-needed
basis (i.e., to provide marketing and administrative assistance).
Office space and equipment are provided by LA County and costs for
these items are reimbursed by the Board.
Santa Clara County, a jurisdiction that the Center
staff has worked with, recently adopted a policy requiring a
determination of whether RAC is appropriate for resurfacing projects.
On projects where it is appears cost effective to use RAC, RAC is to
be included as an alternative bid by each contractor.
To date, the center has received two $500,000
allocations from the Board, for a total of $1,000,000 in funding for
the period July 1, 1997 to July 1, 2000. Of the $1 million allocated
to the center by the Board, $350,000 has been spent to date with a
total of $650,000 currently encumbered (see Table C-10).
Table C-11: LA RAC Tech Center
expenditures and encumbered funds
as of 12/98
Board allocations to project
expenses (including Web site development, workshop production)
assurance/quality control grants
LA RAC Technology Center
Table C-12: LA RAC Technology Center
results based on evaluation criteria established in 1997
of agencies that have received information on rubberized asphalt
from the center
of agencies that have initiated a rubberized asphalt project as
a result of the center
use of crumb rubber as a result of the center
of agencies that have continued the use of rubberized asphalt as
a result of the center
LA RAC Technology Center
Center staff has
extensive contact with local government personnel through workshops,
conferences and telephone queries. Based on this contact, center
staff estimates that the agencies in the following table have
indicated that they have used, or are planning to use, RAC in their
Table C-13: Local governments that
or are planning to use RAC, sorted geographically
LA RAC Technology Center
Between the 43
jurisdictions, center staff estimates that 241,850 tons of RAC was
used, resulting in more than 725,550 tires recycled.
It appears that center staff is reaching many more
city staff than county staff. Of the city staffs reached, the vast
majority are in Southern California. Of the county staff influenced,
three of the four are Northern California counties. Therefore, the
center appears to be reaching more cities than counties and more
counties in Northern California than Southern.
Tire Recycling Grant Program (since 1992-93)
The tire recycling grant program is administered
by the Waste Prevention and Market Development Division and is the
Board’s main method of providing funding for projects related to
tire recycling or reuse. While the Board-designated grant categories
have changed slightly since the early 1990s, the grants can generally
be divided into the following categories:
Local government grants,
including grants for amnesty day/public education, (in the beginning
of the grant program) market development plans, and the purchase of
molded rubber products by school districts. Local conservation
corps grants are also included in the category of “local
government grants” for the purposes of this study. Generally,
local conservation corps grants are directed towards cleanup of
smaller piles in rural areas.
Business development grants
are targeted towards businesses that recycle tires. Some examples
of these efforts include grants for playground safety surface
product development and a market analysis for the uses of crumb
Innovative research grants
are directed towards new and “untested” methods of tire
recycling. These grants were designed to be on the “cutting edge”
of tire reuse and recycling. Some examples of grants awarded under
this category include funding the development of residential roofing
shake products and a tire mussel reef demonstration project.
According to the IWMB’s 1997 tire program
“It is important to remember that
these research and business development projects were not expected to
recycle many, if any, waste tires. The program was designed as an
innovative and aggressive attempt to assist new recycling businesses
and begin or continue research into product development and new
technologies. The IWMB recognized that…research and development
efforts were needed to find new solutions, and although the IWMB
closely scrutinized potential recipients, it recognized that, as with
all research and development programs, some of the research would not
At the end of the grant cycle, the grantee submits
to the Board a final report that details the activities undertaken
pursuant to the grant agreement. These reports are summarized by
Board staff and a “tire recycling grant abstracts report” is
completed. Because the grant cycle is three years, these reports
were only available for VITETTA’s review through the year 1994-95.
The Waste Prevention and Market Development
Division has been providing tire recycling grants since 1992-93.
Over the past seven years, the Board has allocated a total of $6.6
million on these grant programs, with most of the funding directed
towards local governments, particularly since 1994-95. With only
data from 1992-93 through 1994-95 available, the Board has spent a
total of $3,279,755 over the first three years of the program.
A total of 180 grants have been awarded, with the
majority of those (133) being local government and local conservation
corps grants (combined).
Table C-14: Tire Recycling
Grants—Funds allocated and spent 1992/93 through 1997/98
conservation corps grants
As evident from the
table below, grant priorities have changed since the inception of the
program. For the first three years of the program, funding was
roughly evenly divided between the three grant categories. However,
since 1995-96, the overwhelming funding emphasis has been on local
government grants, with no funds allocated for innovative research
grants and less than 15 percent of the total funding allocated for
business development grants.
Table C-15: Tire Recycling
Overview of types of grants awarded, 1992/93–1997/98
# of grants awarded
of business devel. grants
of local govt.
of innovative research grants
of local conser-
vation corps grants
of tires remed-
per Tire (avg.)
All numbers for 1995-96
through 1997-98 are projected since grant cycles are three years and
final reports for 1995-96 grants will be received later this year.
Tire recycling grants
from 1992-93, 1993-94 and 1994-95 had short-term results of
remediating 473,976 tires (tires cleaned up from an illegal pile,
landfilled or put to a productive end use) at a total cost of
This resulted in an average cost per tire of
$6.11. The majority of the tires remediated came from local
government grants, particularly grants for local government amnesty
programs. Between the business development and innovative research
grants, approximately 18,000 tires were remediated, all of which were
consumed by TAK Consulting Engineers during the course of
constructing a demonstration project involving RAC together, local
government amnesty day grants had the lowest cost per tire remediated
at $1.82. Overall, all local government grants remediated 518,476
tires at an average cost per tire of $2.10.
Table C-16: Number of tires
remediated as a result of tire recycling grants, 1992/93–1994/95
number of tires remediated in the short-term (duration of the
development/innovative research grant
However, evaluating the effectiveness of the tire
recycling grants based on the cost per tire of cleanup does not
provide the entire picture. The original intent of the tire
recycling grant program was not to provide low-cost cleanup; rather,
it was to develop, promote, and encourage the development of scrap
tire recycling methods. For example, the development of roof shingle
material made from recycled scrap tires.
Therefore, it is helpful to consider the
effectiveness of the program based on both the end use and other
goals specified in the grantee’s objectives. Based on the
information in the grant abstract, VITETTA has compiled the following
evaluation criteria for local government, business development and
innovative research grants:
Table C-17: Local government grant
Use for Tires
“End use for tires” ranked as “low”
includes disposal or landfilling. High uses are all other uses
(including transformation, recycling, retreading, etc.). Goal
achievement (low and high) was ranked based on the narrative in the
grant abstracts, which describes the objective of the grantee and the
grantee’s results. This may include a goal of recycling a specific
number of tires.
Table C-18: Business development and
grant evaluation criteria
“Marketability” is based on the likelihood of
the product being used at a future date. Goal achievement (low and
high) was ranked based on the narrative in the grant abstracts, which
describes the objective of the grantee and the grantee’s results.
Table C-19: Tire recycling grants
ranked by year, 1992/93–1994/95
# of grants awarded
Slightly less than the majority of the grants (44
out of 98) were ranked as “excellent.” Fifty-one percent of the
grants ranked as “good” or excellent. Only 13 grants ranked as
“terminated” or “not completed.” The majority of the local
government grants were ranked as “excellent” (29 out of 55),
while only three of the 24 innovative research grants ranked as
“low.” Terminated grants were concentrated in the local
government grants with a total of four.
While the grant abstracts contain a plethora of
useful data (i.e., grant amount allocated, grant amount paid, a
general description of the result of the grants), to date no formal
evaluation of the grant results has been undertaken by staff.
Additionally, only immediate results (those occurring during or
directly after the grant tasks were completed) are available for the
grants. Staff is not currently undertaking long-term tracking of the
grant program results.
Retreaded Tires (since 1990)
Public Resources Code section 42410 requires the
“Evaluate current state and federal
quality standards for retreaded tires and identify the obstacles for
an increased market for retreads. The results of this evaluation and
the activities that the Board will undertake to increase the use of
retreaded tires shall be included in the reporting requirements…”
Further, the Public Resources Code requires the
Department of General Services and the Board, in consultation with
representatives of the retreading industry, to adopt specifications
of the purchase of retreaded tires by the State of California.
It is unclear whether specifications for retreaded
tire purchases were promulgated. Based on the information collected
under the “State Agency Buy Recycled Campaign” section, VITETTA
believes that DGS has not purchased any retreaded tires since the
inception of the campaign because there are currently no retreaded
tires on the market that meet DGS’ requirements.
State Agency Buy Recycled Campaign (since 1989)
The Legislature and the Governor created the State
Agency Buy Recycled Campaign (SABRC) in 1989 with the goal of
creating and stabilizing the market for recycled materials, including
processed scrap tires. Increasing the recycling of scrap tires
through programs like SABRC increases the number of tires diverted
from landfills and stockpiles.
In 1993, the Legislature directed the Board to
assist the Department of General Services (DGS) with information and
outreach activities related to the SABRC. Although DGS is
statutorily responsible for the State procurement system and SABRC
implementation, State agencies submit their recycled-content product
procurement reports to the Board.
State law requires all State agencies to plan,
track and report annual purchases of recycled content products (RCP).
State law mandates that, by January 1, 2000, at least 50 percent of
procurement expenditures by each State agency in each of the 11
product categories, including tires and tire-derived products, be of
recycled content product purchases; an increase from the January 1,
1998 goal of 30 percent.
Feedback From State Agencies
In its 1998 report to the Legislature on SABRC,
State agencies and Board staff suggested several ways to increase RCP
Increase the availability of RCPs,
especially through State contracts.
Mandate the purchase of reputable
and price-compatible RCP products.
Get the word out about SABRC to
vendors and State agencies using the Internet, workshops, and other
The State should publicize its
demand and certification requirements for RCPs to vendors.
State agencies should share with
other agencies information on RCP quality and vendors.
Automate and update procurement
systems to better tracking RCP purchases.
efforts on State agencies with the largest procurement budgets.
In 1996-97 only 57 of 137 (about 42 percent) State
agencies self-reported they had met the 1998 RCP procurement goals.
Overall State agencies spent 42 percent of their total dollar
purchases on all RCPs. However, expenditures on tires or
tire-derived RCPs were less than 1 percent of all RCP purchases.
This percentage has remained constant.
To meet the year 2000 statutory procurement goals,
each State agency will need to purchase RCP tires (of at least 50
percent recycled content) for all day-trip fleet vehicles and
allocate 50 percent of their total dollar purchases to RCP
The California State University system was
consistently the largest purchaser of RCP tire or tire-derived
products as a percentage of all tire or tire-derived product
purchases. In contrast, DGS nondelegation purchases (purchases made
by DGS for distribution or “sale” to other State agencies) has
never reported the purchase of an RCP tire or tire-derived product
over the three fiscal years of reporting.
DGS has never purchased a RCP tire because no RCP
tires meet DGS’ product standards.
Conferences, Workshops, and Public Education
Since 1992-93, the Board has been funding
education programs, including conferences, workshops, and public
education efforts associated with amnesty days. In this case, the
goal of the Board’s tire program public education effort have been
to change behavior by:
Making the public aware of the
need to dispose of tires properly and compel the public to do so.
Making purchasing agents aware of
the availability of products made from scrap tires and encouraging
them to purchase these products.
These public education efforts support the Board’s
efforts to decrease the amount of tires in stockpiles and increase
the number of tires that are used as a “commodity” rather than
disposed of as “waste.” According to a 1993 IWMB report,
“The Board should help with
development of the secondary materials market for waste tires by:
Acting as a central network for
sharing market information on costs, barriers, and successful
Educating the public to become
aware of products made from waste tires.”
The Tire Recycling Grants classified as having an
education component include only those grants that were provided to
local governments to fund amnesty days and public education efforts
concurrent with those amnesty days.
The Biennial Tire Recycling Conferences were held
The purpose of the recycling conferences was to
provide attendees with up-to-date information on recycling, market
development and management strategies, as well as solicit from
attendees their input on developing recommendations to solve the
State’s scrap tire problem through the Board’s tire recycling
program. Between 100 and 200 people attended each of the three
The RAC and Crumb Rubber Products Workshops were
held in Monterey on May 23, 1997 and Anaheim on May 30, 1997. The
workshops were designed to provide participants with information
needed for making sound decisions regarding the purchase of products
containing crumb rubber. Between 50 and 100 people attended each of
the two workshops.
Since 1992-93, the Board has spent more than
$820,000 on public education efforts.
Table C-20: Tire program public
education activities since 1992-93
of tires remediated
Tire Recycling Grants
Tire Recycling Conferences
and Crumb Rubber Products Workshops
Most of the public
education efforts undertaken by local governments included
distributing flyers and running newspaper advertising and radio
public service announcements. The local government amnesty programs
were the only public education efforts to which specific numbers of
remediated tires could be attached.
Generally, based on analyzing the participant
evaluations from the conferences and workshops, the events were
generally ranked by participants as “excellent” or “very good.”
Table C-21: Overview of conference
my expectations (excellent or very good)
was valuable (strongly agree or agree)
facilities (excellent or good)
(excellent or above average)
Overview, Findings, and Recommendations
Draft Paper Regarding Tire Program Augmentation, 1995-96.
Recycling Program Annual Report, April 1992.
Report on California’s Waste Tire Program, October 1998.
Report, California Tire Recycling Management Fund: FY 1992-93
Policy, November 20, 1992.
Recycling Program 1995 Annual Report: Report to the Legislature,
Program Priorities and Funding Allocations: Working Draft Background
Paper,” August 1996.
Recycling Program Evaluation: Required by the Supplemental
Report of the 1996 Budget Act, January 1997.
Daniel, Memo to Ralph Chandler, IWMB Executive Director, regarding
IWMB Tire Recycling Program Review, June 16, 1995.
with Legislative Analyst’s Office, January 1999
Policy Proposal, Office of Environmental Protection, June 10, 1991).
Tire Program Mission Statement Discussion
Document, July 14, 1994 and Tire Program Priorities and Funding
Allocations, August 1996).
Major and Minor Waste Tire Facility Permits
Ralph. Internal Memorandum to Secretary Peter M. Rooney, California
Environmental Protection Agency, dated May 12, 1998.
Resources Code, 42820-42835.
Waste Tire Facilities in California (n=275
waste tire units), Microsoft Excel document, received via email on
January 14, 1999 from IWMB Permitting and Enforcement Division.
State-Funded Cleanup Activities
23: Consideration of the FY 1997/98 Waste Tire Management Program
Fund Allocations, IWMB Board Meeting, April 24, 1997.
Report on California’s Waste Tire Program, October 1998.
interview, January 1999.
“Tire Program Priorities and Funding
Allocations, Working Draft Background Paper” for the September 5,
1996 Workshop of the IWMB’s Policy Research Technical Assistance
Committee, August 1996.
Tire Hauler Program
#1: Consideration of FY 1995/96 Proposed Program Activities and
California Tire Recycling Management Allocations," IWMB Policy,
Research and Technical Advisory Committee, December 5, 1995.
#23: Consideration of the FY 1997/98 Waste Tire Management Program
Fund Allocations," April 24, 1997.
Report on California's Waste Tire Program, October 1998.
Permitting and Enforcement Division staff interviews, January 1999.
IWMB “Tire Program Priorities and Funding
Allocations: Background Paper,” August 1996.
Enforcing Tire Facility Regulations
Working Group Draft Recommendations Paper, January 4, 1999
and Enforcement Division staff interviews, December 1998 and January
permitting information, provided by Permitting and Enforcement
Division staff, January 1999.
Inspection and Enforcement staff, PowerPoint presentation, January
Counsel interview, January 1999.
IWMB tire penalties chart, January 1998.
Local Government Cleanup Matching Grants
1997/98 local government waste tire cleanup matching grant table,
prepared by Permitting and Enforcement Division staff, 1998.
with Permitting and Enforcement Division staff, December 1998.
government matching grant applications from the Yuba-Sutter Regional
Waste Management Authority, City of Rialto, City of Bakersfield,
Plumas-Sierra Fairground, Acacia Waste Tire Site, City of Modesto,
Hesperia Fire Protection District, March/April, 1998.
Overview Report on California’s Waste
Tire Program, October 1998
Local Government Enforcement Grants
recipients, 1997-98 grant recipients tables, IWMB, December 1998.
tire recycling program application for pilot waste tire grant
Permitting and Enforcement division staff interview, December 15,
Report on California’s Waste Tire Program, October 1998.
Enforcement Grant Final Report from Yuba-Sutter LEA, April 14, 1998.
Enforcement Grant Final Report from Imperial County, April 9, 1998.
Enforcement Grant Final Report from Tulare County, April 27, 1998.
Waste Tire Enforcement Grant Final Report
from Riverside County, April 24, 1998.
Fire Safety Training Program
Report of the Tire Fire Program, Office of the State Fire
Marshall, October 1, 1994.
Report on California’s Waste Tire Program, October 1998
Rodney Slaughter telephone interview,
January 13, 1999.
Rubberized Asphalt Concrete (RAC)
Report #1, Yolo-16-PM, 28.5/37.0 Asphalt Rubber Test Section,
Development Division staff interview, January 1998.
Recycling Grant Program: Awards by Fiscal Year, 1997.
Tire Recycling Grant Abstracts for Grants
Awarded, 1992-93, 1993-94, 1994-95.
Caltrans Use of Rubberized Asphalt Concrete
Natural Resources Committee, Bill Analysis of AB 375 (Firestone),
April 21, 1997.
legislative staff interview, January 1999.
as a Fuel Supplement: Feasibility Study, January 1992.
with Jack Van Kirk, January 1999.
Technology Center, Report to the Policy, Research and Technical
Assistance Committee of the IWMB, December 2, 1997.
Technology Center, RAC Informational Pamphlet, 1998.
Rubber Pavements Association staff
interview, December 1998 and January 1999.
LA RAC Technology Center
Technology Center, informational brochure, 1997.
Technology Center staff interview, December 1998.
Technology Center, Report to the Policy, Research and Technical
Assistance Committee of the IWMB, December 2, 1997.
Tire Recycling Grant Program
Research and Technical Assistance Committee, Agenda Item #5, August
Development Division staff interviews, December 1998.
Recycling Program Evaluation: Required by the Supplemental Report of
the 1996 Budget Act, January 1997.
Recycling Grant Abstracts for Grants Awarded, 1992-93, 1993-94,
Recycling Grant Program: Awards by Fiscal Year, 1997.
Market Development Status Report, 1993.
Program Priorities and Funding Allocations, August 1996.
Public Resources Code Section 42400 et seq.
State Agency Buy Recycled Campaign (SABRC)
Agency Buy Recycled Activities, A Report to the Governor and
Legislature, September 1, 1998.
Agency Buy Agency Campaign staff interviews, January 1999.
Department of Environmental Protection, 1998 Solid Waste Annual
Report and Florida’s Department of Environmental Protection
Conferences, Workshops, and Public Education
1997 RAC and
Crumb Rubber Products Workshops Summary of Proceedings, 1997.
Recycling Grant Program: Awards by Year, 1997.
Products Workshops, Workshop Evaluation, June 3, 1997.
Biennial Tire Recycling Conference, Conference Proceedings, June
Biennial Tire Recycling Conference, Conference Evaluation, June
Biennial Tire Recycling Conference, Conference Evaluation, November
Recycling Grant Abstracts for Grants Awarded, 1992-93, 1993-94,
Individual State Programs
Under Florida state law, a waste tire means a tire
removed from a motor vehicle that has not been retreaded or grooved,
including used and processed tires.
In 1988, Florida initiated its waste tire program.
At the time the waste tire program was created, Florida had an
estimated 18 million tires stockpiled. Today, approximately 3
million tires remained stockpiled around the state. However, Florida
officials report the last site with over one million tires was abated
under state cleanup contract last year. The largest remaining
stockpile is 148,000 tires; the second largest contains 50,000 tires.
In Florida, the largest industrial use of waste
tires is transformation in cement kilns or energy recovery (9.1
million); however, the production of crumb, retreaded and used tires,
septic drain fields, RAC, and die cut parts, when combined, are
greater than the number of scrap tires transformed (9.15 million).
Florida prohibits the landfilling of whole waste tires; however,
waste tires may be cut into small pieces, as defined by state law,
and deposited or used as cover for landfills.
In 1997-98, the state tire program had a budget of
approximately $12 million. The Division of Waste Management (DWM)
within the state’s Department of Environmental Protection (DEP)
administers the tire program that has four main components:
Annual county grants.
Florida Department of
Transportation (FDOT) research and development.
Since 1989, total funding for these four programs
has surpassed $121 million, about 23 percent of all appropriations
made from the Solid Waste Tire Management Trust Fund.
Florida’s waste tire program is funded by the
state’s Solid Waste Management Trust Fund which receives revenues
from the $1/tire fee on all new tires, a .2 percent sales tax
collection allowance and an annual sales tax registration fee.
Exempted from the $1 tire fee are tires intended
for agriculture uses, used, and retread tires. In 1997-98, the fee
generated revenues of $17.4 million.
DEP provides annual grants to counties, based on
county population. In 1997-98, counties received a total of $8.43
million in tire grants. The Waste Tire Grant program to counties is
the state’s second largest solid waste grant program, just behind
the state’s $10.13 million Recycling and Education Grant Program
(not tire-related). An additional $2 million is expended by the
state annually on mosquito control related to waste tire abatement
from the Solid Waste Management Fund.
Counties may use the funds for a wide range of
efforts related to waste tire disposal and recycling, including:
Site cleanup and abatement
Establishing collection centers
products made with waste tires
The Solid Waste Fund also finances research and
development for Florida’s Department of Transportation (FDOT).
FDOT uses about 10 percent of the 19.9 million waste tire generated
annually in Florida in asphalt pavement applications. FDOT is not
mandated to use RAC but, according to Florida officials, the
department uses the product because of its performance and economic
benefits. FDOT has jurisdiction over half of all of the roadways in
Florida and uses RAC for all its resurfacing projects in the state.
Through its Department of Management Services,
Florida has a statutorily mandated procurement plan for recycled
content products. Florida also has a price preference for recycled
products, including an elective 10 percent price preference, plus an
additional 5 percent if the product is made from Florida-recovered
Additionally, procurement officers may consider
the lifecycle cost of a product when comparing recycled content
products and virgin products. Florida requires all state agencies to
spend a percentage of expenditures on recycled content products and
to report their procurement activity through a uniform reporting
mechanism. Statutory goals for purchasing recycled content paper
were established for 1995 to 1998.
In 1993, Florida created a Recycling Market
Advisory Committee to review and make recommendations to improve the
state’s recycling market development activities. To advertise the
state’s demand for recycled products, Florida has published a list
of recycled content products (RCP) to heighten these products’
visibility to state procurement officials.
Florida has also produced an on-line service that
consolidates participating state RCP information into a single
searchable database and has designed a streamlined procurement
process for environmentally friendly products. The state’s
Recycling Committee has also sponsored workshops for vendors,
recycling manuals for citizens and studies related to recycling
Finally, staff reports the state’s prison
industry program has a retread manufacturing shop that produces tires
for public agency use. The facility also provides job training for
inmates and operates a statewide consulting service on tire selection
for state vehicles.
Permitting and Enforcement
The primary emphasis of Florida’s tire
remediation program is cleaning up stockpiles not addressed by
responsible parties or site owners. Under the original program,
state law allowed DEP to contract for waste tire cleanup if the
owners cannot or will not abate them.
Florida law allows tire generators, including
commercial retailers and dismantlers, to stockpile up to 1,000 tires
without a permit. However, non-generators must obtain a collection
center permit ($500 to obtain, renewable every 5 years), and any
facility storing over 1,000 tires must obtain a processing facility
permit ($1,250 to obtain, renewable every five years).
Although DEP did not track all private tire site
abatements and end uses of these waste tires, department personnel
estimate that an estimated 4.5 million tires have been removed
through private efforts since 1997. Since 1988, combined
state-sponsored and privately funded efforts remediated over 10
million tires from 96 sites. In 1998, Florida reported the last of
its million-tire sites was abated under state contract, amounting to
the additional disposal of 5 million tires.
Like California, Florida regulates waste tire
haulers. All collectors and transporters of waste tires must obtain
an annual, $35 permit from DEP to be affixed to vehicles transporting
tires. Additionally, scrap tire generators must maintain records of
the location, date, quantity, registration number of the collector,
and name of the driver for review by DEP or law enforcement officers.
DEP’s 1998 Annual Solid Waste Report recommended
that Florida dedicate funds generated from the waste tire fee to
waste tire programs and encourage the industry to use tire derived
fuel through the development of incentives.
Noteworthy Tire Program Elements:
VITETTA found the following programs in Florida
High use of RAC by FDOT.
This use of RAC is entirely voluntarily and, according to Florida
officials, RAC is so widely used by FDOT because of the performance
and economics of the product.
Relatively decentralizedtire program. Florida’s tire program is relatively
decentralized compared to the Midwestern states examined. While not
as decentralized as Arizona, Florida provides opportunities for
county involvement through block grants which counties spend as they
choose within a range of tire-related program. Additionally, the
state delegates the cleanup of smaller tire piles (100,000 or less)
to local governments.
Prison industry involvement.
Florida’s prisons are involved in the tire program through the
establishment and maintenance a retread manufacturing shop that
produces tires for public agency use and provides job training for
As defined in Illinois law, a waste tire is a used
tire that has been disposed of; a used tire means a worn, damaged or
defective tire that is not mounted on a vehicle.
In 1990, Illinois established the Used Tire
Management Program designed to clean up tire stockpiles, develop
markets for tire-derived products, control mosquitoes in tire piles
and provide financial assistance to local governments.
Illinois estimates it generates slightly over 16
million waste tires annually and recycles 100 percent of these tires,
primarily through energy recovery (13 million). An additional 2
million scrap tires are used in cement kilns, resulting in over 93
percent of Illinois’ scrap tires being transformed for reuse.
According to the DCCA estimates, Illinois imports 5 million tires and
exports 1 million annually.
Although prohibited by state law, Illinois reports
500,000 tires were stored or illegally disposed of in landfills in
1997-98. If Illinois’s recycling rate is adjusted to measure
non-transformation and nonlandfill uses, about 3 percent of the
state’s tires annually go into recycled tire products.
Although the size of stockpiles was unknown when
the program began, Illinois now estimates that less than 5 million
tires remain stockpiled throughout the state. Last year, Illinois
reports the state spent $2 million for the permitting, enforcement
and cleanup of more than 650,000 tires.
The total budget for Illinois’ tire related
programs, including market development programs, was approximately $8
million for 1997-98.
Illinois’ market development programs are
administered the Department of Commerce and Community Affairs (DCCA).
The permitting and enforcement programs are administered by the
Illinois Department of Environmental Protection (IEPA), but the
Illinois Department of Public Health (IDPH) and Department of Natural
Resources (DNR) also administer small segments of the state’s tire
The vehicle transfer fee originally funded
Illinois’ tire program. However, in 1991, Illinois established a
$1 per tire fee, collected by retail tire dealers. Retreads, mail
order tires, tire on vehicles (i.e., tires on new cars) and tires on
non-motorized vehicles are exempt from the fee. Each year, the fee
generates about $8 million in revenues. DEPA and DCCA receive about
80 percent of these revenues and the remaining 20 percent go to the
other state agencies.
Market Development Activities
Illinois state law authorizes about $1.8 million
annually for market development activities related to tires. The
state administers several competitive grant programs, each with a
variety of objectives including:
Solid waste research
Increasing the content of recycled
material in products.
Improving solid waste collection.
General market development
diversion projects for end-product manufacturers
DCCA’s Used Tire Recovery Unit provides grant
and loan assistance to public, nonprofit, and private efforts to put
tires to a productive end use. According to DCCA, the mission of the
program is to create self-sustaining markets for Illinois’ scrap
and waste tires. In 1997-98, the largest grant given by DCCA was
$500,000 to tire processors and end users for equipment purchase.
Illinois also funds cleanup, including conducting
21 one-day amnesty days at the request of local governments
throughout the state. The annual cleanups allow county residents,
excluding commercial trucking companies or retailers, to bring up to
1,000 waste tires to designated collection points with no tipping
fee. According to IEPA, in 1996, more than 500,000 waste tires were
collected at 31 sites. Collections were scheduled for 21 sites in
1997 but total collection figures were not yet available.
Similar to California’s Buy Recycled Campaign,
Illinois requires state agencies, colleges, and universities to meet
statutory procurement goals for purchasing of recycled content
Permitting and Enforcement
Illinois does not require a permit to stockpile
tires; however, stockpiles must meet certain management standards and
stockpiles of 5,000 or more tires must have a financial assurance
mechanism or a tire removal agreement.
Illinois exempts tire retailers from the storage
requirements if their tire inventory turns over every 90 days and the
retailer has less than 250 tires stored outside and fewer than 1,300
tires stored inside.
Illinois state law charges the IEPA with
permitting and enforcement authority for the tire program. If the
owner of the property or responsible party refuses to remove and
properly dispose of waste tires, the IEPA can perform the cleanup and
recover the cost of the cleanup. A separate fine may also be levied
against the owner, equal to double the cost of cleanup.
Like California, Illinois regulates tire haulers
and prohibits the transport of more than 20 waste tires without being
registered with IEPA and displays the appropriate placard. All tire
hauler registrations are effective for two years and are renewable.
Noteworthy Tire Program Elements
The following tire program elements in Illinois
Exemption for turnover.
Illinois exempts tire retailers from storage requirements if their
inventory “turns over” within 90 days. This encourages
retailers to turn over their scrap tire inventory quickly.
Haul up to 20 tires without a
permit. Illinois allows citizens transporting tires to haul up
to 20 without a permit from the state. California currently limits
to four the number of tires that can be hauled without a permit.
Number of state agencies
involved. There are four state agencies directly involved in
tire-related program in Illinois, more than in any other state
reviewed by VITETTA
Degree of centralization.
Like Wisconsin, Illinois’ tire program is extremely centralized.
Almost all of the tire program-related activity (with the exception
of local cleanup days that the state runs and funds) occur
independently of local government activities.
As defined in Wisconsin law, a waste tire means a
tire that is no longer suitable for its original purpose because of
wear, damage or defect.
During the fall of 1986, a tire fire began at one
of Wisconsin’s largest stockpiles. By the time the fire
extinguished itself, an estimated 2 million tires had been burned.
This fire highlighted to the state legislature the potential
environmental and public health risks associated with uncontrolled
tire storage and disposal of scrap tires.
In 1988, Wisconsin imposed a fee on vehicle tires
and promulgated regulations regarding the storage of scrap tires. In
1990, Wisconsin established the Waste Tire Removal and Recovery
Program within the state Department of Natural Resources (DNR), with
the intent of establishing a temporary rebate program, which
sunsetted in 1997, to encourage the productive end use of scrap
tires. Wisconsin banned all scrap tires from landfills in 1995, but
DNR has the authority to waive the ban in certain cases.
Wisconsin officials estimate 5 million scrap tires
are produced annually in the state and that nearly 100 percent of
these tires are put to productive end use through energy recovery
(4.5 million) and the production of crumb, reuse/retread,
manufacturing of other recycled products (0.5 million).
Less than four million tires are imported
annually, with less than 2.5 million exported. If Wisconsin’s
recycling rate is adjusted to measure non-fuel uses, about 10 percent
of the state tires annually are put to productive end use.
Over the past nine years of the program, Wisconsin
cleaned up over 89 percent of the sites containing Wisconsin’s 15
million stockpiled tires. In a 1998 program report, DNR estimated
approximately 350,000 tires remain in stockpiles, mostly in small
(less than 500 tires) sites throughout the state.
In total, Wisconsin’s program collected, reused,
or otherwise properly disposed of 33 million tires (both “new”
flow and stockpiled) over the nine-year course of the program, at an
estimated cost of $.64 per tire through private, local, and state
funded cleanup efforts.
Wisconsin’s program had three main elements:
Waste tire reimbursement grant
Waste tire management and recovery
Waste tire stockpile cleanups.
Wisconsin’s Rebate Program
State law authorized $1 million annually for two
grant programs under the Waste Tire Removal and Recovery Program:
Reimbursement to users of scrap
tires grants (allocated 75 percent of the fund annually) in the
amount of $.20 per tire for transformation and $.40 per tire for
other productive end uses.
Scrap tire management and recovery
grants (allocated 25 percent of the fund annually).
Table E-1: Expenditures for
Wisconsin’s waste tire removal
and recovery program since
program inception (1988-1997)
over the course of the program
Wisconsin tire program officials
Reimbursement grants were designed to compensate
end users and processor of scrap tires for the cost of developing and
operating waste tire recovery activities.
Over the past six years of the reimbursement grant
program, 106 grants were awarded to 33 recipients, totaling $8.5
million. These grants financed the collection and productive end use
of more than 33 million tires. The overwhelming majority of the
rebates (96 percent) were awarded to transformation facilities, with
a small portion (4 percent) allocated for highway improvements and
other product development.
The largest total grant given by DNR during the
course of the program was $1.6 million to Wisconsin Power and Light
for use of tire-derived fuel.
Rebate-eligible end uses, as defined in Wisconsin
state law, included:
of new products
End uses not eligible for rebate included:
Reuse as a vehicle tire or erosion
uses of whole or split tires such as for barriers or fencing.
Under the scrap tire management and recovery grant
program, DNR awarded a total of nearly $2.5 million for 116
management and recovery grants over the course of the program. Most
management grants went to local governments to assist with routine or
annual waste tire cleanups. Recovery grants were generally awarded
to private organizations for research and development activities.
Grant awards were limited to 50 percent or 75 percent of the eligible
costs, with a maximum award of $50,000.
Permitting and Enforcement
Wisconsin law allows tire retailers and removal
businesses to stockpile up to 500 tires without a permit and
completely exempts auto dismantlers from solid waste storage
licensing requirements for waste tire storage.
Although DNR was authorized by state law to spend
$2 million annually for state-sponsored cleanup, it also works with
private parties to ensure cleanup of illegal piles. DNR can ask that
the Attorney General sue the responsible party for stockpile cleanup
costs and legal expenses related to cleanup. In its 1998 report, DNR
had recovered about 9 percent of the total cleanup costs through
settlements and court awards.
While the tire program has expired, Wisconsin
officials report that tire-related permitting and enforcement
activities continue to be carried out by solid waste field staff at
The $2 per tire fee ($10 total per vehicle) was
collected by the state Department of Transportation at the first-time
registration of a new, on-road vehicle (used and off-road vehicles
Annual revenues generated from the fee varied
between $2 million and $3 million annually. In 1996-97, the last
year of the program, the program’s total budget was $2.5 million
and with total revenues of $2.75 million.
Termination of the Program
On June 30, 1997, Wisconsin’s program sunsetted
and the fee was eliminated. Two years prior to the termination of
the program, DNR reported that all tire stockpiles were nearly
eliminated and that the market for “new” flow tires was
No additional funding was provided for the tire
program subsequent to the termination of the program and fee.
State lawmakers are expected to revisit the issue
of tire end uses within the next five years. Since the termination
of the reimbursement grant program, six months prior to the sunset of
the entire program, several energy recovery facilities stopped
accepting crudely processed tires, and several facilities terminated
According to Wisconsin officials, nine
transformation facilities were operating during the course of the
rebate. Since the rebate expired on January 1, 1997, six facilities
have either closed or stopped using tire-derived fuel, leaving three
transformation facilities in Wisconsin today.
Wisconsin officials also report that environmental
groups are now raising air quality issues associated with
transformation. Additionally, the remaining transformation
facilities are concerned about the economics of tire-derived fuel.
Currently, the market for tire-derived fuel is
stable and economically feasible, but the use of other
cleaner-burning fuels, like natural gas, may soon strongly compete
with tire-derived fuel. As older transformation facilities, like
pulp factories, replace older machinery with new cleaner-burning
machines, Wisconsin officials expect the demand for tires to
However, Wisconsin solid waste personnel believe
that a high volume, end use alternative other than transformation,
such as roofing material or highway construction, may eventually need
to be developed as an alternative end use for the state’s annual 5
million scrap tire flow. Unless an alternative to transformation is
identified, officials there believe that the state may have to
consider a partial repeal of its landfill ban to permit the disposal
of processed tires.
Noteworthy Tire Program Elements
Noteworthy tire program elements in Wisconsin:
Wisconsin’s fee collection
method. Collection of the fee at the point of new vehicle
registration resulted in low cost of fee collection (less than
$50,000), compared to California and Florida where the fee is
collected by at the tire retail level and the estimated cost of
collection is about $500,000.
A property tax rebate to
tire-related businesses administered by the Department of Commerce.
The Departments of Commerce and Natural Resources offer long-term,
low-interest loans to private entities to fund the acquisition of
new technology related to productive end use of scrap tires.
Under Arizona law, a waste tire is defined as a
tire that is no longer suitable for its original intended purpose
because of wear, damage, or defect. “Waste tire” does not
include tires used for agricultural purposes as bumpers on
agricultural equipment or as ballast to maintain covers at an
Arizona generates approximately 4 million scrap
tires annually. Of these, three million are diverted to a crumbing
facility that processes tires to be used in road construction, most
of which is used in Arizona state roads. The remaining million “new”
annual flow tires are either exported to California (to the Azusa
monofill or the BAS crumb rubber processing facility) or landfilled
in a new county solid waste facility in La Paz County.
Two cement kilns currently have permits to use
tire-derived fuel. However, according to Arizona officials, neither
is currently using tire-derived fuel, mostly because of public
opposition to transformation. State law requires the Arizona
Department of Environmental Quality to permit cement kilns to use
tires as fuel if the facility can demonstrate that it will result in
emissions equal to or lower than that produced by other types of
From 1990 to 1993, responsibility for Arizona’s
tire program was divided relatively evenly between the state and the
counties. In the early 1990’s the state executed a contract with a
processor to build a crumbing facility and process all of Arizona’s
scrap tires. Arizona Department of Environmental Quality (ADEQ) kept
5 percent of the program revenues for administration and divided the
remainder between Baker Rubber (55 percent) and the counties (45
In 1993, Arizona’s 15 counties became fully
responsible for the state’s scrap tire management program, and 13
counties joined together to form a consortium led by the largest
county, Maricopa. The county consortium contracted with a tire
retreading and recycling company to build a pyrolysis plant on an
Indian reservation. The company began collecting tires in
anticipation of the construction and operation of the plant and
eventually had 4 million tires stockpiled on site. The company filed
for bankruptcy and in 1995 each of the counties became free to
contract with the tire processor of its choice.
Currently, each county is required by state law to
maintain a collection facility and take tires from tire retailers at
no charge. Counties then pay tire processors a per tire fee to haul
the tires and dispose or process them. All parties other than tire
retailers with manifests and county residents with five or fewer
tires must pay a tipping fee when depositing tires at the county
According to state officials, many counties are
currently storing hundreds of thousands of scrap tires at the tire
collection facilities. Counties do this in order to maximize their
financial relationship with tire processors. If counties stockpile
tires and have tire processors haul the tires away once per year it
costs less than more frequent removals.
Because Arizona counties pay processors to haul
and process all the tires left at the collection facility, some in
the industry characterize Arizona’s system as providing a “rebate”
for tire processors. However, Arizona differs from Wisconsin in that
it doesn’t provide a payment for each tire used. Rather, counties
pay one or more processors to help the county deal with the tires
deposited at county collection facilities.
Essentially, Arizona has placed the counties as
the “middle men” between tire retailers and tire processors. In
California, tire retailers contract directly with tire processors
and/or tire haulers and pay to have tire removed from their retail
Arizona provides a free “outlet” for tires
from retailers and, instead, “passes through” the county to the
tire processor the tire fee paid by the consumer at the time of
purchasing a new tire. According to ADEQ officials, counties
generally pay an average of $93 per ton to processors to haul and
dispose/recycle the collected scrap tires.
In 1990, the Arizona Legislature passed a law
establishing a 2 percent fee on the sales price of new tires. The
fee is capped at $2 per tire sold (average fee paid is $1.10 per
tire) and is collected by the retail seller of the tire. The fee is
collected by the Arizona Department of Revenue and retailers are
allowed to keep $.10 to cover administrative expenses. ADEQ is the
administering state agency for the tire program. According to ADEQ
officials, the Department of Revenue does not retain a portion of the
tire fee collected to cover the costs of collection but, instead,
covers these costs through the department’s general budget.
According to Arizona officials, ADEQ currently has
no market development program. State officials believe that any
market development undertaken by a county would likely be funded out
of the county’s general fund.
Permitting and Enforcement
Despite shifting responsibility for the tire
program to the counties, ADEQ continues to provide tire facility
permitting and enforcement throughout the state. Arizona has scrap
tire storage requirements, as follows:
Storage facilities with less than
500 tires have to be stored in compliance with local zoning and fire
Storage facilities with 500 to
4,999 tires must be registered with ADEQ as a waste tire collection
site and tires must be stored in accordance with state statute. No
financial assurance is required.
Storage facilities with over 5,000
are classified as the state as a “solid waste facility” and must
be permitted as much, including providing financial assurance and a
Arizona does not currently regulate tire haulers.
Noteworthy Tire Program Elements
The following elements in Arizona’s program are
Degree of decentralization.
Arizona’s tire program is the most decentralized of all the states
reviewed. Responsibility for tire collection and disposal rests
with the counties. Counties also receive almost all of the tire fee
revenue collected, with the state maintaining a small portion to
cover administrative, permitting and enforcement costs. While
decentralization can allow new partnerships and ideas to be
generated, there is also a danger in decentralization, as evidenced
by the county consortium experience in 1993.
Allowing tire retailers to dispose
of tires for free and county residents to dispose of five or fewer
tires annually for free. In Arizona, tire retailers with manifests
can dispose of tires at county collection facilities with no tipping
fee. In California, tire retailers generally contract with a tire
hauler or processor and must pay for tires to be hauled and
processed. This creates an economic incentive for certain tire
retailers to dispose of their scrap tires illegally and thus avoid
paying the tip fee. Allowing county residents to dispose annually
of a small number of tires without a tip fee may also help decrease
the number of smaller, illegal piles.
Amount of tires stored at tire
collection facilities. Arizona state officials noted that a number
of counties, for economic reasons, opt to have tires hauled away
once per year, resulting in potentially large number of tires
Sources for Appendix E
Florida’s Department of
Environmental Protection, 1998 Solid Waste Annual Report and
Florida’s Department of Environmental Protection web site.
Materials available on the department’s Web site at
Florida state statutes, on line at