The TRA was formed in July 2004 and was born out of a common sense of purpose and professionalism which unites its members.
A cornerstone of the body is its Responsible Recycler Scheme. All TRA members are fully accredited by the scheme, which guarantees that all tyres collected, recycled or reprocessed by them are disposed of or reused in an environmentally friendly manner or best practice methods.
However, markets for tyre recovery continue to grow and develop and as the EU Landfill Directive is applied right across Europe a new international dimension will evolve.
The TRA has the independent ability to pursue its broader objectives at both industry and government levels, generate performance data specific to its members’ interests as well as develop stronger European links.
The Tyre Recovery Association lobbies vociferously in defence of its members’ interests.
The TRA is in ongoing dialogue with the Environment Agency over industry specific Fire Prevention Plans and has argued strongly for a waste-stream specific approach to design a template to help members gain approval for fire prevention at their sites.
The most recent Fire Prevention guidelines were introduced by the EA in 2016 but the TRA believed its members would be unfairly impacted by these proposals as its member companies, who are regularly audited under its Responsible Recycler Scheme, would lose business. The industry specific proposals would allow TRA operators to continue operating within a safe environment.
Responsible Recycler Scheme
The TRA aims to offer the highest standards and best practice in the form of the Responsible Recycler Scheme.
Its intention is to improve the image of used tyre management in the UK tyre industry in the eyes of the public, government and wider tyre industry, whilst marginalising malpractice. It has more than met this early expectation.
Initially open to just tyre collectors the scheme quickly moved to embrace tyre recyclers and reprocessors in recognition of their common interests and in acknowledgement of the important role they all have in helping tyre manufacturers, retailers and indeed Government itself meet the EU Landfill Directive. (The Landfill Directive, which came into full effect in July 2006 requires that virtually all end of life tyres be recycled or re-used in some new way). Those leading the scheme realised at an early stage that, whether concepts of producer responsibility were to be introduced into the UK in support of the Directive or not, the adoption of best practice concepts was essential to fully meet the challenges ahead.
Transparency, traceability and accountability are cornerstones of the scheme. Responsible retailers, fleet companies and other users of tyres who use RRS are guaranteed that the tyres collected by members of the RRS are disposed of in an environmentally friendly and acceptable method, whether recycled or used as a fuel, helping them comply with their Duty of Care obligations as well as protecting the environment. As a guarantee, those who subscribe to the scheme are subject to a stringent annual audit process conducted by independent environmental audit specialists. As a measure of its success this unique ‘Chartermark’ scheme has attracted considerable international interest. Those companies who sign up to the scheme are awarded an annual certificate of compliance. In turn, tyre retailers and all those others they service are presented with their own certificate confirming to their customers that their own old tyres will be responsibly reprocessed.