ARTS: Paving The Way For Rubber Recycling Technology In South Carolina
Free (open access)
S N Amirkhanian
South Carolina’s Department of Health and Environmental Control (DHEC) awarded a $6 million, five year grant to the Clemson University for a research- outreach program to establish Asphalt Rubber Technology Service (ARTS) that could literally pave the way toward eliminating the millions of worn-out tires that clog the state’s landfills. Each year, approximately 4,000,000 waste tires are generated in South Carolina. Around the country that number is estimated to be around 280,000,000 tires each year. Through the project, many highways and secondary roads will be paved with rubberized asphalt. In addition, the scrap tires will be utilized in embankments, retaining walls, running tracks, new tires, and golf-course cart paths. Recycling discarded tires could have significant impact on the reduction of solid waste in South Carolina and the rest of the nation. The five-year project will enable the ARTS team to work with agencies and communities statewide to identify recycling markets for waste tires and to provide education, training and technical services. Approximately $950,000 of grants will be available each year to help fund projects throughout the state. Grant money comes from the state’s Waste Tire Trust Fund. A $2 fee is paid on each new tire sold in South Carolina. Of that fee, 44 cents is placed in the Waste Tire Trust Fund. The ARTS’ funding is for the differential cost of conducting a project using crumb rubber versus using just the raw materials (i.e., no crumb rubber). This paper will discuss several issues involved with recycling tires and several projects that have been completed to date. The technical and environmental issues involved with such projects will be discussed. The benefits and disadvantages of such technology will also be addressed.