WARREN, Australia—Australian tire recycling company Green Distillation Technologies is considering expanding into Europe to win a slice of the tire recycling business pie in the region.
The company was prompted to target Europe following industry data showing that only 42 percent of the 12 million metric tons of end-of-life tires are recycled in the region each year.
"In addition, there is the waning interest in crumbing tires for sporting field infill, as well as a potential ban on this use," GDT chief operating officer Trevor Bayley said in a statement.
Furthermore, GDT believes it offers "a much better and environmentally sympathetic" recycling alternative to mechanical recycling.
Green Distillation has developed an emissions-free "proprietary technology" which is capable of recycling end-of-life car and truck tires into saleable commodities of carbon, oil and steel.
The company claims that the oil produced through its technology is comparable with "light crude, which is low in sulphur and easy to refine into petrol, diesel, jet fuel and other petroleum-based products."
GDT also maintains that the carbon produced in the process is a high-grade product with high potential for sale as carbon black.
The company is working to bring its two Australian processing facilities in Warren, located in Western New South Wales, and Toowoomba in Southern Queensland into full production.
It also is planning to build five other Australian plants in Gladstone, Wagga, Geelong, Elizabeth and Collie Western Australia.
Bayley said GDT is in negotiations to finalize agreements for plants in the U.S., United Kingdom and South Africa.
Each plant will have a capacity to process 19,300 tons of ELTs, comprising a mix of passenger car, four-wheel drive and truck tires.
For a typical 22-pound car tire, the high-yield process can produce nearly a gallon of oil, 10.3 pounds of carbon and 4.3 pounds of steel, according to Bayley.
"In the light of this burgeoning environmental disposal problem, our approach provides a recycling solution—to turn a problem into valuable and highly saleable materials," he said.