Figuring out what to do with old tires and tubes has always been a challenge for the eco-minded cyclist. It's a bummer just throwing them away but let's face it, it's not like recycling opportunities were found on every corner. In fact, other than finding ways to repurpose the tires and tubes around home, hoping a bike shop would take them (and pray that they'd not require a fee to recycle them, like when one disposes of an old computer monitor) was the best that one could hope for.
Now, Performance Bike has made a giant leap forward in this area, offering free recycling for tires, tubes and chains at its retail outlets. With more than 100 stores in 18 U.S. states, chances are there is a store near you.
The tire/tube program is a partnership with Liberty Tire Recycling, the nation's largest collector of used and scrap tires, hauling in nearly one-third of all of America's annual scrap tire harvest. The used bike tires and tubes will be recycled into mulch for playgrounds, athletic fields and highway asphalt, among other things. Used chains will be re-purposed into bike schwag by Resource Revival, which will turn them into cool and functional things bottle openers, picture frames, bike chain bowls and the like.
Awesome idea, and my hat's off to them.
- Article: Best Options for Repurposing Old Tires and Tubes
- Performance Bike store locator
- Resource Revival web page