Recently, in Chile, a group of 26 companies came together to create the first and largest end-of-life tyre management system, in compliance with the Law of Extended Producer Responsibility (Nº20,920).
Tyre Industry Comes Together to Establish a Major Chilean EPR Scheme
The founders of the system are world leaders Bridgestone and Michelin, along with the main tyre importers, and the most important vehicle importers.
The system will follow the model that has been implemented in many European countries for the past 20 years.
The company will be named “EcoNeu, and the general manager has considerable experience in the field. He is none other than Jesus María Nuñez Imaz. He was the creator and director of Signus Ecovalor, the main system in Spain. Nuñez’s experience adds immense value to the project.
EcoNeu is being advised by the prominent Chilean law firm Cariola Díez Pérez-Cotapos, led by its partner Sergio Diez, and by the Spanish firm Gómez-Acebo y Pombo, a leader in management systems for various priority products in Spain, whose team is headed by lawyer Pedro Poveda Gómez. The scheme will be capable of overcoming all the legal challenges and geographical and environmental complexities presented by the law.
Currently, only 15 per cent of Chile’s 140,000 tons of tyre arisings are recycled every year. EcoNeu hoped to replicate the successes of the EPR schemes in Europe and make a considerable impact upon tyre recycling in Chile.
The EcoNeu system will begin to operate in 2023 and is currently coordinating its strategy and agreements with recycling companies according to the law’s obligations and goals.
“Proper management will allow the reuse of used tyres after a retreading operation and transform them at the end of their useful life into secondary raw materials that can be used in multiple applications, such as surfaces for sports courts, playgrounds floors, artificial grass filling, etc. road paving, modified thermoplastics and even new tyres. Likewise, thanks to their great calorific value equivalent to the best coal, they can be used as an alternative fuel in steel and cement companies,” summarised the general manager of EcoNeu.
The founding companies of EcoNeu come from the three trade associations of the sector (Chile Neumáticos, CINC and ANAC) and it is estimated that together they represent in excess of 50 per cent of the volume of car tyre imports.