USTMA's Commitment to GHG Reductions

USTMA members are committed to reducing GHG emissions throughout a tire’s lifecycle.

USTMA's Commitment to GHG Reductions

From ensuring sustainable sourcing for our raw materials, to proactive measures to reduce GHG emissions from our manufacturing facilities, to producing tires that improve vehicle fuel economy, to recognizing the biogenic content in scrap tires when they are used as tire derived fuel USTMA members are committed to reducing greenhouse gas emissions. 

USTMA members support policies that promote sustainable sourcing of raw materials.

  • Tires contain natural rubber, which is harvested from the Hevea brasiliensis, or rubber tree.  These trees are grown in biodiverse areas in Asia.  Forests in these regions cleared to grow rubber trees can threaten biodiversity and increase carbon dioxide emissions from deforestation.
  • In 2018, eleven USTMA members, who are also members of the Tire Industry Project, a project of the World Business Council for Sustainable Development, launched the Global Platform for Sustainable Natural Rubber (GPSNR) to address deforestation impacts associated with natural rubber.  Learn more about what GPSNR is doing to advance a fair, equitable and environmentally sound natural rubber value chain by visiting www.gpsnr.org
  • When natural rubber is produced sustainably, rubber production can increase biodiversity and carbon sequestration and reduce carbon dioxide emissions from deforestation.  The sustainable natural rubber platform seeks to ensure a sustainable natural rubber supply chain.

USTMA members support policies that recognize proactive efforts to reduce CO2 emissions from manufacturing facilities.

  • USTMA members have an aspirational sustainability vision to reduce our environmental footprints, including reducing greenhouse gases from manufacturing.
  • The U.S. Department of Energy has recognized U.S. tire manufacturers for widely adopting currently available energy efficiency technologies to save energy. https://www.energy.gov/sites/prod/files/2017/12/f46/Plastics_and_rubber_bandwidth_study_2017.pdf
  • As a low energy intensive but high trade sensitive industry, we support policies that recognize the proactive initiatives our members have taken to reduce GHG emissions through initiatives such as fuel switching to cleaner natural gas, energy efficiency projects which include LED lighting; steam, condensate, and compressed air leak programs; and fan upgrades.

USTMA members support policies that promote the use of low rolling resistance tires.

  • USTMA members have an aspirational sustainability vision to manufacture tires that reduce greenhouse gas emissions throughout a tire’s useful life.
  • Improving a tire’s rolling efficiency can have a meaningful impact on vehicle fuel economy and gasoline consumption.
  • The greatest opportunity for USTMA members to reduce CO2 emissions is from fuel usage during the in-use stage, which represent 86% of total CO2 emissions from the tire lifecycle.[1]
  • For typical vehicles, a 10% improvement in rolling efficiency can reduce consumer fuel expenditures by 1-2%. This savings is equivalent to 6-12 gallons per year, or $18-$36 if fuel is priced at $3 per gallon.
  • A 1 to 2 percent increase in the fuel economy of passenger and light truck vehicles, from the use of low rolling resistance tires, would save about 1 billion to 2 billion gallons of fuel per year of the 130 billion gallons consumed by all consumer vehicles. This fuel savings is equivalent to the fuel saved by taking 2 million to 4 million cars and light trucks off the road. (https://www.nap.edu/read/11620/chapter/2#7, pages 3-4)

USTMA members support policies that recognize the biogenic or natural rubber fraction in scrap tires used as tire derived fuel.

  • USTMA members have an aspirational sustainability vision and goal that all scrap tires enter sustainable end use markets
  • In 2017, over 81% of scrap tires went to beneficial end uses, a major contribution to the near-elimination of scrap tire piles across the country.
  • Tire derived fuel (TDF), which represents 40% of beneficial end use markets, has a high heat value, displaces the use of traditional fossil fuels, and includes 24% natural rubber that EPA has recognized as carbon neutral biomass.[2]
  • Industrial facilities across the country, including pulp and paper mills, cement kilns, and electric utilities use TDF as a supplemental fuel to increase boiler efficiency, decrease air emissions, and lower costs.
  • USTMA supports federal and state policies that recognize the 24% natural rubber fraction in TDF as carbon neutral and incentivize the use of biogenic and waste materials as fuel.
 

[1] See e.g., https://www.bridgestone.com/responsibilities/environment/reduce_co2/index.html

[2] See e.g., Greenhouse Gas Reporting Rule, 40 C.F.R. 98.33(e)(3)(iv); Biomass Accounting Framework, App. N (2014); Clean Power Plan, 80 Fed. Reg. 64886.

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