A shocking one billion waste tyres are generated worldwide each year. Working out what to do with them is one of the biggest waste challenges we face today.
The Australian government is investing in solutions that shreds tyres into ‘rubber crumb’ to build playground surfaces and infill artificial turf. Unfortunately, this is not the solution it seems.
A new study shows rubber crumb playgrounds release an estimated 1.2 million crumbs on average into the immediate environment, while other research suggests tyre chemicals may have toxic health effects on both marine and human life. Experts warn immediate steps are needed to ensure government-endorsed recycling programs don’t solve a problem, while quietly causing another.
– Email the Australian Government’s Minister for the Environment at firstname.lastname@example.org requesting a review of federal government funding into the Tyre Stewardship Australia’s rubber crumb recycling program until thorough research into human health and environmental harm has been conducted.
– Send a letter to your local Councillor telling them why they should use organic materials like sand for playgrounds and to infill artificial turf in your local area.