ST. MARYS, Ontario—The Ontario Ministry of the Environment and Climate Change has issued Green Arc Tire Manufacturing Inc. a draft Environmental Compliance Approval permit for its St. Marys plant, moving the nascent passenger tire retreader one step closer to production.
Green Arc Tire was started in late 2013 with the vision of setting up an industrial-scale passenger retread plant in a vacant 400,000-sq.-ft. former truck chassis plant.
The company was founded by Mike DiCenzo, a Canadian with more than 30 years of experience in the used tire, casings and recycling industries, with financial backing from Phoenix Capital Partners, a Toronto venture capital firm, and Bancorp Financial Services Inc., a Vancouver mortgage fund management firm.
DiCenzo, CEO and COO of Green Arc Tire, put the investment in 2013 to start Green Arc Tire at $37 million (Canadian), with production of 3 million passenger, light truck and SUV tires—predominantly winter specification—a year projected at the new plant.
In March of last year, Green Arc struck a deal with rubber compounding specialist AirBoss of America Corp. for the supply of up to 24 million pounds of rubber annually.
Green Arc said earlier this month it can take from two to three years for a startup enterprise to obtain an ECA permit for a manufacturing enterprise, although management had hoped it would have been sooner. The ECA covers a variety of environmental concerns, including air quality, noise, waste generation and disposal, contamination cleanup, etc.
Green Arc's next step is to review the draft ECA permit and provide feedback to the ministry, which will review the comments and, if all goes well, approve the final permit. Green Arc estimates it could start production within about four months of receiving the final permit.
“The draft permit confirms that Green Arc has met the highest standards as set out by the ministry,” DiCenzo said in prepared statement. “We are delighted that our operation is moving forward, allowing us to create hundreds of new jobs in the town and region.”
Green Arc plans to hire 340 workers at its plant in St. Marys, including 40 former members of the Canadian Armed Forces. Salaries will range from $16 to $26 an hour, with benefits, pensions and profit sharing.
“We're eager to put people to work in a region that needs new jobs,” said DiCenzo.
Green Arc is a strong supporter of winter tires to improve driving safety. The company commends the Ontario government for its recent budget announcement that includes an insurance discount for drivers who equip their vehicles with winter tires. Green Arc is an environmental leader in tire production.