With the recent liquidation of Recycling and Economic Development in South Africa (REDISA), tyre recycling has become one of the hottest topics at both a local and international level, according to tyre industry veteran John Stone.Stone says this has raised the larger question of whether or not tyre recycling is a viable business to explore. REDISA was established to mitigate the detrimental impact of waste tyres on public health, environment, and economic development of lands, whilst involving local communities through job creation. It had set to achieve an ambitious goal of recycling 100% of the waste tyres (246 631 tons) produced in Africa in 2011, by the end of 2017. As of February 2016, it had helped the creation of 226 small businesses and 3112 jobs. 12 728 tons of waste tyres were processed according to the Department of Environmental Affairs.
Exploring new opportunitiesStone says that while the results were remarkable, they were far from achieving the nation’s objective of recycling 100% of its 38 waste streams by 2022. “The blueprint which REDISA was built on is no longer valid, with businesses opposing the move in view of cost factor and in turn, leading to jobs cut,” he explains. “While there are apprehensions about the impact REDISA’s liquidation has on the tyre industry, others are actively exploring various opportunities to recycle waste tyres for profits,” Stone notes.
Here are some examples of South African businesses which had successfully turn waste into worth over a span of few years.