<h2>Expect <strong>more</strong> environmental responsibility</h2>

Expect more environmental responsibility

At Kal Tire, we believe in helping customers achieve sustainability with their tires at every stage of the journey, including end of life. With investments in resources, innovative solutions and new ways of working, we help mines extend tire life and solve one of our customer’s biggest challenges: recycling scrap tires.

Recycling toward a Circular Economy

Our new thermal conversion facility delivers a revolutionary approach to recycling ultra-class mining tires.

Located in the heart of Chile’s mining region, home to some of the world’s largest copper mines, Kal Tire’s facility has the capability to recycle 20 tonnes of tires each day—and 40 per cent of the weight of those scrap tires has the potential to return to mines as alternative fuels.

  • Kal Tire arranges transport, loading and unloading of all sizes of scrap tires, including 63” tires
  • Thermal conversion decomposes organic material with heat in the absence of oxygen, converting tires back into their original components: fuel oil, carbon black and steel

Turning Scrap Tires into Green Products

Mine operators in western Canada now have a solution for end-of-life earthmover tires. Through a partnership with a North American leader in tire recycling, Kal Tire offers an earthmover tire recycling service with the annual capacity to shred nearly 6,000 mining tires, many from northern Alberta’s oil sands region.

  • Kal Tire coordinates collection of scrap tires up to 63” from mine sites across BC, Alberta and Saskatchewan
  • At the recycling facility in northern Alberta, tire materials are separated and rubber is shredded into crumbs
  • Tire crumb is used as an additive in tire-based products such as rubber mats, hoses, roofing tiles and asphalt

The Road to the Most Impactful Recycling Solution

The Road to the Most Impactful Recycling Solution

Driven by a commitment to solve our customers’ biggest environmental challenge—scrap tires—Kal Tire set out to develop a mining tire recycling solution that could do more for mines and communities than traditional shredding.

As a company that sells, manages and repairs mining tires, several years ago, one of the biggest issues Kal Tire saw coming forward was the disposal of end-of-life tires. What to do with scrap tires has long been a significant concern for mines, but for many operations, stockpiling has been the only option. Recycling giant earthmover tires is complex: tires can weigh 4 tonnes and many mines are far from major centres, but Kal Tire committed to investing in a solution.

Several years ago, as Kal Tire began to explore mining tire recycling options beyond shredding, Chile became one of the first countries to move ahead with legislation around end-of-life mining tire disposal.

Chile is home to six of the 10 largest copper mines in the world and nearly 500,000 tonnes of scrap tires. Large hauling equipment calls for ultra-class tires, and both mines and government wanted to create a greener future. Kal Tire has been serving customers in Chile for nearly 20 years, and so the Chilean government’s legislation discussions became the impetus for Kal Tire to begin developing a mining tire recycling solution that would first be used in Chile.

Could we develop an effective way to recycle ultra-class tires? Could we do more than simply shredding? Could we somehow create a circular economy by giving mines a way to reuse a tire’s original materials?

With many more questions and learning—and a tremendous investment in innovation—in 2020 we proudly opened a thermal conversion recycling facility in Antofagasta, a port community in the heart of Chile’s mining industry.

This thermal conversion approach, once known as pyrolysis, decomposes organic tire materials using heat in the absence of oxygen, and returns tires to their original materials: fuel oil, steel wire and carbon black. We then purify to ensure 100 per cent of the tire can be reused—creating a circular economy our stakeholders so wanted to achieve.

With the capability to recycle 20 tonnes a day, we look forward to doing our part to make an impact in Chile for years to come.

In building this innovative facility in Chile, Kal Tire wanted to do the right things right. Our Chile team had three guiding principles:

Environmental Standards

Our thermal conversion process has been designed to exceed the world’s most stringent environmental emission standards.

Safety

To follow the highest standards of fire safety at the plant, Kal Tire has installed:

  • 250 cubic-metre water reservoir
  • Seven water cannons
  • Infrared sensors
  • F500, a special fire encapsulation ingredient

Adaptability to Different Regions

Kal Tire is exploring how thermal conversion end products, such as alternative fuels, could meet local standards and demands in regions such as Australia, Colombia, South Africa and the UK.  

Now, as other jurisdictions move toward mining tire recycling legislation, Kal Tire is exploring opportunities to bring our thermal conversion technology to customers around the world.  

Thermal Conversion Outcomes

Steel

High quality tensile steel found in OTR tires can be recycled for a variety of purposes.

Carbon Black

Refined carbon black can be used in batteries, pigments, paints, plastics and new rubber and tire production.

Fuel Oil

Heavy fuel oil suits generators and other machinery or it can be refined into alternative fuel for re-use in mine site equipment.

Gas

Gases are fed back into the reactor—a self-fueling, low carbon output solution.

Get in touch

Learn more about how our recycling and sustainability solutions can help your mine reduce your environmental footprint and make a difference.