The U.S. Tire Manufacturers Association (USTMA) has released the “Milepost 2020: Climate Change Mitigation Sustainability Update,” a new report on the progress its members have made toward reducing CO2 emissions and the industry’s climate change mitigation goals.
Speaking as a panelist at the 2021 World Rubber Summit, “Inclusiveness, Sustainability and Growth for the Next Normal,” USTMA president and CEO Anne Forristall Luke highlighted advancing sustainability efforts of USTMA’s 13 member companies, including innovative products, operational enhancements and research and development investments.
“USTMA’s climate vision takes a holistic view of climate change mitigation throughout a tire’s life cycle, encompassing the full scope of members’ operations and supply chain,” said Forristall Luke. “Our members are committed not only to manufacturing products that reduce CO2 emissions, but also to research and development of materials with lower carbon footprints. In addition, they are taking proactive measures to reduce greenhouse gas emissions from manufacturing facilities and advancing the circular economy for scrap tires. Our members have made significant advances in all of these areas in recent years.”
In her comments at the World Rubber Summit, Forristall Luke noted that in addition to stringent natural rubber procurement policies, the vast majority of USTMA members are making major contributions downstream in the value chain.
For example, noting that more than 80% of tire-related CO2 emissions are linked to vehicle fuel consumption, tire manufacturers are offering broader and more advanced portfolios of products with improved rolling efficiency, meaning less energy is required to propel a vehicle down the road.
USTMA members also are taking action to reduce their carbon footprints and mitigate climate change impacts in their facility operations. As a result, total emissions of CO2 related to tire manufacturing facilities decreased 15% from 2010 to 2019, and the tire manufacturing industry remains a low-energy industry compared to others.
In addition to reducing CO2 emissions from manufacturing operations, many tire manufacturers are actively researching and using recycled and renewable feedstocks that have a lower CO2 emissions profile. For example, guayule and dandelions, plant-based rubber alternatives that can be grown closer to manufacturing facilities, thus reducing CO2 emissions associated with transport of natural rubber, are examples of renewable feedstocks being explored and utilized.
To learn more, and to see specific examples of U.S. tire makers’ initiatives to mitigate climate change, view or download “Milepost 2020: Climate Change Mitigation” Sustainability Update.”