JOINT FAVORABLE REPORT
AN ACT CONCERNING BENEFICIAL END USES FOR DISCARDED TIRES AND THE EFFICACY OF TIRE HAULING LICENSES OR PERMITS.
Joint Favorable Substitute
Disclaimer: The following Joint Favorable Report is prepared for the benefit of the members of the General Assembly, solely for purposes of information, summarization and explanation and does not represent the intent of the General Assembly or either chamber thereof for any purpose.
SPONSORS OF BILL:
Rep. Joseph P. Gresko, 121st Dist.
Rep. Philip L. Young, 120th Dist.
REASONS FOR BILL:
The illegal dumping of tires has become a persistent problem in Connecticut, polluting and littering state waterways and forests. Additionally, illegally discarded tires can potentially provide an ideal breeding ground for mosquitoes and present a fire hazard to its local surroundings. Although advocates have shared testimony explaining a used tire recovery program could potentially reduce Connecticut's municipal waste stream and create jobs in Connecticut, suggestions had been brought to the attention of the Environment Committee that establishing a tire hauler license, one that includes a manifest, is the proper first step towards addressing the problem of the illegal dumping of such tires.
SUBSTITUTE LANGUAGE – LCO No. 1831
The bill as originally drafted would have required the Connecticut Department of Energy and Environmental Protection (DEEP) to identify beneficial end uses for discarded tires that results in the recycling of such tires, and to obtain information of the efficacy of tire hauler license or permit programs. Substitute language replaces the bill and requires DEEP to establish a tire hauler license. The license shall require that all licensees maintain a manifest, does not illegally dump tires, and only delivers such tires to certain facilities as prescribed in the substitute language.
RESPONSE FROM ADMINISTRATION/AGENCY:
Robert J. Klee, Commissioner, Connecticut Department of Energy and Environmental Protection (DEEP): Opposes the bill. DEEP has already conducted research in area of discarded tires, and is able to share findings with the Environment Committee. Additionally, establishing a licensing or permitting program would require the department to establish a new state program. DEEP would require funding and additional staff and suggests the best strategy to address such problems is to establish a stewardship program similar to programs already in place for paint and mattresses.
NATURE AND SOURCES OF SUPPORT:
Scott Cassel, Chief Executive Office, Product Stewardship Institute: The Product Stewardship Institute supports the intent of this bill to increase tire recycling. However, the state should establish a tire stewardship program in Connecticut. Approximately 75 percent of the 3.5 million crap tires the state generates annually are burned as tire-derived fuel rather than reused or recycled. Furthermore, the Connecticut Department of Transportation collected 16,000 illegally dumped tires on state roads in 2014. The state has implemented four extended producer responsibility programs that has (1) diverted more than 26 million pounds of material from disposal, (2) yielded a cumulative cost savings of more than $2.6 million per year to municipalities, (3) provided additional recycling services worth $6.7 million, (4) lead to the creation of more than 100 jobs, and (5) reduced greenhouse gas emissions by more than 13 million kilograms of carbon equivalent.
Donna Hamzy Advocacy Manager, Connecticut Conference of Municipalities: It is estimated that more than 3.4 million tires become scrap every year in Connecticut. Many are illegally dumped in towns and cities, forcing municipalities to shoulder the cost of collecting, transporting and disposing of such tires. A tire stewardship program would (1) minimize public sector involvement in managing discarded tires, (2) provide for free state-wide opportunities for the receipt of discarded tires, (3) provide for the free collection of discarded tires from municipal transfer stations, (4) provide for producer-financed end-of-life management for discarded tires, and (5) provide for suitable storage and transport arrangements for discarded tires at no cost to municipalities.
NATURE AND SOURCES OF OPPOSITION:
Alicea Charamut, River Steward, Connecticut River Conservancy: DEEP has already provided a report the Environment Committee in 2016 titled, “Long Term Management Options for Scrap Tires Generated in Connecticut.” The Connecticut River Conservancy included in testimony (1) an excerpt of DEEP's conclusion as stated in the report, (2) a list of “highlights” from the Maryland, Michigan, and Texas tire programs, and (3) a copy of 2017's HB 6352 An Act Establishing a Tire Stewardship Program (LCO No. 3361). This bill is the same as 2015's SB 869 and “would be a step backward for [the] committee.” The state should create a safe and innovated way to reuse tires.
David Greenstein, Vice President, Lakin Tire East: Provided comment on the bill. Lakin Tires supplies the equivalent of 4.5 million tires in the form of feed-stock to a crumb rubber producer located in New York and believes such uses represent the highest form of recycling for the State's discarded tires. The state of Connecticut is one of the country's leading states in converting discarded tires into crumb rubber; however, mandating the cessation of tire derived fuel will not help create other markets. “The state and Lakin Tire are goal aligned in identifying the highest and most beneficial end uses of discarded tires… if the vehicle for exploring such end uses is to establish a Tire Stewardship program, Lakin Tire would urge the state and [The Department of Energy and Environmental Protection] to include Lakin Tire and its years of experience within the stewardship program.” Additionally, Lakin Tire believes that implementing a tire hauling/permit program could be beneficial.
Reported by: Pamela Bianca / Ussawin R. Bumpen