During national Earth Day activities in Washington, D.C. (April 22, 2012), Bridgestone Americas announced a one-for-one spent tire program that sets a waste-free vision for the future of the tire industry.
Building upon the 98% rate already achieved by our 2,200 Bridgestone Retail Operations stores nationwide, we are launching the One Team, One Planet Spent Tire Program, which is designed to eventually ensure that for every new tire the company sells in the United States, one spent tire – a tire that has been removed from use – is sent to another valuable purpose. Currently, spent tires in the U.S. go to valuable end uses at the rate of approximately 85%, according to the Rubber Manufacturers Association.
We have designed this initiative to be multi-faceted, with a program for our company-owned stores, a voluntary program for our extended network of affiliated retailers across the country, and a community program that provides scrap tire collection for community and river clean-up events.
We are committing that by the end of 2012, 100 percent of spent tires from our network of company-owned stores in the United States will be sent to valuable use. This includes all Firestone Complete Auto Care, Tires Plus, Wheel Works and Expert Tire locations. Starting in 2013, we will launch a voluntary dealer program for our extensive network of affiliated retailers, which will encourage our sales partners to also strive towards zero waste of spent tires at their stores.
The community clean-up support program includes a new partnership with River Network. The Portland-based nonprofit leads a national watershed protection movement that includes more than 2,000 local, state and regional grassroots organizations whose primary mission is to protect rivers and watersheds. Our new community clean-up support program will recycle any spent tires collected during any River Network or other independently organized clean-up event – free of charge. You can request tire recycling support by filling out a form here.
The purpose of this program is simple – to improve our environment by moving towards a waste-free tire industry where all spent tires are captured and sent to another valuable use. It’s a lofty goal, but failure is not an option when it comes to ensuring the future health of our environment. And that’s why we’re not doing it alone. By working together with our affiliated retailers, community partners, academia, government entities and others in our industry, we can and will find better solutions for our products at the end of their useful lives.