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Tire CEOs reaffirm commitment to research for sustainability

GM-Sustainable-Natural-Rubber-Tires-e1495021852845

CEOs of eleven leading tire manufacturers met to review progress and confirm the ongoing mandate of the leading global forum for tire manufacturers on sustainability issues.

Founded in 2005, the Tire Industry Project (TIP) is a global CEO-led initiative undertaken by leading tire manufacturing companies to research potential human health and environmental impacts of tires throughout their lifecycle. TIP operates under the umbrella of the World Business Council for Sustainable Development (WBCSD) and is co-chaired by Bridgestone, Goodyear, and Michelin.

Representing approximately 65% of the world’s tire manufacturing capacity, TIP member CEOs meet biennially to review project progress and approve a two-year work plan. The work plan is reviewed by an Assurance Group of independent scientists who provide guidance on the scientific relevance and robustness of planned work.

In their review of the 2018-2019 work program, CEOs commended TIP on the landmark initiation and launch of the Global Platform for Sustainable Natural Rubber (GPSNR), an independent multi-stakeholder platform created to lead improvements in the socioeconomic and environmental performance of the natural rubber value chain.

On the work undertaken by TIP on tire and road wear particles (TRWP), TIP CEOs recognized the significance of the 2019 study, “Evaluation of Tire Wear Contribution to PM2.5 in Urban Environments,” that demonstrated that TRWP are a minor contributor to airborne particulate in three major cities. TIP has supported research into TRWP for more than a decade and has made a substantial contribution to relevant scientific literature.

The CEOs also approved publication of an updated TIP global state of knowledge report on the management of end-of-life tires (ELT), and a 2019 edition of the TIP report on environmental key performance indicators for tire manufacturing, noting overall improvement in TIP member performance.

The publication of a Product Category Rule (PCR) for tires was noted for its contribution to improve standardization and transparency in tire lifecycle environmental impact assessment.

The CEOs went on to approve a 2020-2021 work program that will include numerous research projects studying TRWP, including extended sampling of TRWP presence in different environmental compartments (air, rivers, soil, estuaries), analyzing the degradation of TRWP, modelling TRWP fate in the environment and investigating the potential health impacts on organisms from long-term exposure to TRWP.

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