Used tire recycling in Germany 2022 (tonnage) as of October 2023
The amount of used tires will continue to decline in 2022. Compared to the previous year, the downward trend in the amount of new tires continues, from 460.000 tons in the previous year to 443.000 tons. The export of used tires is unchanged compared to the previous year.
The figures for the recycling of used tires are almost unchanged compared to the previous year. Material recycling, which concerns the production of granules and rubber powder, recorded an increase of 225.000 tons, which was 220.000 tons in the previous year. A large decline continues to be recorded in recycling in the cement industry, from 166.000 tonnes in the previous year to 143.000 tonnes.
Waste tire recycling and scrap tires - recycling routes in Germany 2021 (tonnage) as of August 2022
Presumably due to the corona pandemic, the tonnage of used tires has fallen slightly as of 2021. Significant changes compared to last year are fewer new tires 460.000 tons to 497.000 tons in the previous year. The export of used tires increased to 12.000 tons (previous year 8.000 tons).
When it comes to the recycling of used tires, exports for energetic recycling and for recycling or further recycling have increased significantly. Material recycling (granulates and rubber powder) is declining by 220.000 tons compared to the previous year's 251.000 tons and recycling in the cement industry by 166.000 tons compared to 171.000 tons in the previous year.
Waste tire utilization and recycling in Germany 2019 (tonnage) as of August 2020
Used tire recycling rate rises to a new record high - proof of a functioning circular economy
The scrap tire recycling rate reached a new record high last year. This was announced by the German Rubber Industry Association (wdk) in Frankfurt am Main on the occasion of the presentation of the used tire figures. Accordingly, the total amount of used tires in 2019 was 571.000 tons. This is a decrease of two percent compared to the same period last year.
The Technical Managing Director of the wdk, Stephan Rau, highlighted two important trends: “Firstly, the material recycling of used tires is still on the rise. Last year, 251.000 tons of used tires were processed into granules and rubber powder. This corresponds to an increase of six percent. Technically high-quality products are then made from these secondary raw materials, which shows that the circular economy works for used tires.” On the other hand, these figures confirm the trend towards long-lasting tires, Rau continues. "Although the number of registrations increased noticeably in 2019 - there was an increase of 5 percent for passenger cars and even 6,2 percent for commercial vehicles - the number of used tires in Germany has fallen overall."
While more than two thirds of used tires (approx. 68 percent) are materially recycled or retreaded, 175.000 tons (approx. 32 percent) are used in the cement industry. This thermal recycling is an ecologically and economically sensible addition to the recycling process, since not all used tires are suitable for material recycling. With a minus of ten percent, this recycling method has recorded a sharp decline in volume.
In addition to granulation and pyrolysis, important forms of material recycling of used tires include the reuse of carcasses (26.000 tons) and the export of retreaded tires (48.000 tons).
The NEW LIFE initiative, which emerged from the wdk working group on secondary raw materials in 2019, also provides information about the professional recycling of used tires (www.initiative-new-life.de).
The trade association of the German rubber industry eV (wdk) is the leading organization of the German manufacturers of tires and technical elastomer products. It represents around 170 companies with around 73.000 employees and a total annual turnover of almost eleven billion euros.
Waste tire recycling in Germany 2018 (tonnage) as of July 2019
Material recycling of used tires continues to increase
Material recycling of used tires has continued to increase, while thermal recycling has continued to decline. As reported by the German Rubber Industry Association (wdk) in Frankfurt am Main, the total amount of used tires in 2018 was 583.000 tons. This is slightly less than in the previous year.
Used tire recycling channels (used tire recycling channels)
"This confirms the trend towards more durable tires," explained the technical director of the wdk, Stephan Rau. "Although the number of registrations continues to rise, the amount of used tires remains practically constant." He pointed out that the rubber industry has been recording the amount of used tires for almost 20 years now, showing that it is aware of its responsibility.
For the first time, the wdk also published the trends in the recycling of old tires. Accordingly, material recycling increased by three percent last year compared to 2017. On the other hand, thermal recycling, which takes place as incineration in the cement industry, continues to decline (minus 2,5 percent). The thermal use of used tires is of great importance in the cement industry and makes ecological and economic sense there, explained Rau: “Used tires consist of about three quarters of a combustible fraction that is used for energy. The remaining part contains material resources that are essential components of the cement clinker, so that old tires can be completely recycled in cement production without leaving any residues.” Because not all tires can be recycled.
While almost 2018 percent (34 tons) of the used tires produced in 196.000 were recycled in this way, the rate of material recycling is now a good 66 percent. Most of this (236.000 tons) was processed into granules and rubber powder. Other important forms of scrap tire recycling include the reuse of carcasses (27.000 tons) and the export of retreaded tires (49.000 tons).
European and, above all, German manufacturers use the secondary raw materials granules and rubber powder to produce technically high-quality products. “The example of material recycling from used tires shows how a circular economy can work. By recycling, the companies are making an important contribution to more sustainability.” Rau emphasized that it is therefore counterproductive to condemn products made from recycled tires without a reliable factual basis, referring to the most recent discussion about artificial turf sports fields after the publication of a study. The information contained therein about the discharge of small granules into the environment is incorrect. The responsible DIN standards committee had already pointed out that the database for this study was incorrect. The Technical Director of the wdk therefore warned against a blanket condemnation of recycling products made from used tires without a solid basis. Rather, it is necessary to promote the circular economy, as agreed in the coalition agreement between the CDU/CSU and SPD.
dr Christopher Sokolowski
wdk eV • Unter den Linden 26 • 10117 Berlin
Tel. 030 726216-120
firstname.lastname@example.org • www.wdk.de
Waste tire recycling in Germany 2017 (tonnage) as of July 2018
Stable quantity of used tires in Germany – Rubber industry: Recycling of used tires must be given more political support!
July 25, 2018 – wdk press service
The volume of used tires in Germany has remained stable. Despite a continuously increasing number of vehicles, it has leveled off at around 580 tons a year, according to the German Rubber Industry Association (wdk) in Frankfurt am Main.
The total amount of used tires was 2017 tons in 584, with a simultaneous increase of 000 percent in new vehicle registrations. Most of this (2,7 tons) was processed into granules and rubber powder, which in turn are used to manufacture a variety of high-quality products such as insulating mats, sports floors or artificial turf pitches. 229 tons of used tires went to the cement industry as raw material.
On the occasion of the announcement of the current GAVS tire numbers, the Technical Director of the wdk, Stephan Rau, called for the implementation of the coalition agreement. In it, the Union and the SPD have agreed that they want to make greater use of the recycling potential of relevant waste streams – such as old tires. But these words have so far not been followed by deeds, says Rau: "Unfortunately, the reality is different. More and more recycling routes and possible applications for high-quality products made from the secondary raw material old tires are being closed. Products made from used tires are practically discriminated against due to ignorance and incorrect analysis methods. The federal government urgently needs to take countermeasures here and maintain the market for such recycling products.”
A suitable measure would be the appointment of a federal commissioner for raw materials, which the wdk has been calling for for a long time. He could also work to ensure that the wealth of secondary raw materials in Germany is better used and that old tire recycling remains a success story.
The German Rubber Industry Association (wdk) is the umbrella organization for German manufacturers of tires and technical elastomer products. It represents a good 160 companies with around 75.000 employees and a total annual turnover of more than eleven billion euros.
dr Christopher Sokolowski
wdk eV • Unter den Linden 26 • 10117 Berlin
Phone 030 726216-121 • Fax 069 7936-175
email@example.com • www.wdk.de
Frequently asked questions about scrap tire recycling in Germany
The professional recycling of used tires plays an important role in Germany in order to reduce environmental pollution and use resources more efficiently. More and more people are thinking about what exactly happens to used tires in Germany and to what extent they can be recycled.
What happens to used tires during recycling?
In Germany, millions of used tires from vehicles that are no longer used accumulate every year. In terms of a functioning circular economy, environmentally friendly recycling is the most sustainable and environmentally friendly solution. Scrap tires are first subjected to a thorough examination to determine their condition and possible uses. They are sorted according to certain criteria.
Thanks to technological advances, it is now possible to make the majority of end-of-life tires recyclable. In specialized recycling plants, the tires are shredded and the various materials such as rubber, textiles and metal are separated. The material obtained is then further processed and used for various purposes. For example, floor coverings, rubber mats or sports field coverings can be made from recycled rubber. The recycling of used tires thus contributes to the conservation of resources and reduces the environmental impact.
How are used tires properly disposed of?
Private individuals should also pay attention to certified and therefore environmentally friendly disposal. Many municipalities have recycling centers or special collection points where used tires can be handed in. There, the tires are then properly disposed of and sent for further recycling. It is important not to simply dispose of used tires in nature or with household waste, as this can lead to environmental problems.
Tire recycling is a key to reducing environmental pollution and the efficient use of resources in Germany.
Through our cooperation and combined expertise, we can offer efficient and reliable services in the recycling of used tires. Our certified partners have specialized recycling facilities and state-of-the-art technologies to handle used tires professionally.
As members of the BRV, we stand for transparency and sustainability. We comply with all applicable regulations and work closely with government and environmental organizations to ensure our recycling practices meet the highest standards. Through our eco-friendly approaches, we help minimize the environmental impact of end-of-life tire disposal and promote the circular economy.