New agency over­sees re­cy­cling of scrap tires

Con­sumers not ex­pected to no­tice any change to ser­vice; fees re­main the same

Regina Leader-Post - - FRONT PAGE - PAMELA COWAN

Con­sumers aren’t ex­pected to no­tice a change now that a new agency is over­see­ing the re­cy­cling of scrap tires in Saskatchewan.

Since 1996, the Saskatchewan Scrap Tire Cor­po­ra­tion (SSTC) op­er­ated a scrap tire prod­uct man­age­ment pro­gram on be­half of 1,380 Saskatchewan re­tail­ers of mo­tor ve­hi­cle tires. Over 21 years, 27 mil­lion scrap tires were col­lected.

But on Aug. 31, the non-profit, non-gov­ern­men­tal agency re­spon­si­ble for the ad­min­is­tra­tion and man­age­ment of the provin­cially leg­is­lated scrap tire re­cy­cling pro­gram ceased to op­er­ate.

“Ul­ti­mately, the de­ci­sion was up to the Saskatchewan Scrap Tire board about whether or not to dis­solve — that was their de­ci­sion,” said Wes Ko­tyk, as­sis­tant deputy min­is­ter with the Min­istry of the En­vi­ron­ment.

He ex­plained the de­ci­sion came af­ter the en­vi­ron­ment min­is­ter es­tab­lished an ad­vi­sory com­mit­tee in Jan­uary to do a pro­gram re­view of the scrap tire pro­gram.

“A num­ber of rec­om­men­da­tions came out of that re­view and re­sulted in some scrap tire reg­u­la­tions be­ing changed,” Ko­tyk said.

His­tor­i­cally, there have been con­cerns about aban­doned tires, he said.

The main driv­ers for the reg­u­la­tory changes were to ad­dress the pub­lic’s ex­pec­ta­tion for gover­nance, im­proved ac­count­abil­ity and trans­parency, he said.

“There was some con­fu­sion about the gov­ern­ment’s role — was it the ste­ward’s role or was it SSTC’s role for man­ag­ing cer­tain com­po­nents, es­pe­cially when it got on to the back end of the process and use of the tires,” Ko­tyk said.

He noted there were no prob­lems at the front end when con­sumers dropped off tires.

“That sys­tem seemed to be work­ing quite ef­fec­tively,” Ko­tyk said.

When the new reg­u­la­tions came into force in July, the pro­gram de­sign was re­vamped.

“The pre­vi­ous pro­gram didn’t al­low for ease of im­ple­ment­ing any changes or mov­ing things for­ward,” he said.

In the past, if tires weren’t picked up as fre­quently as they should be, the min­istry couldn’t read­ily in­flu­ence changes for im­prove­ments.

Now con­di­tions can be im­posed on the or­ga­ni­za­tion op­er­at­ing the pro­gram if there’s not enough ed­u­ca­tion or if the op­er­a­tion isn’t be­ing run as ef­fec­tively or ef­fi­ciently as pos­si­ble, Ko­tyk said.

Ef­fec­tive Sept. 1, the Tires Stew­ard­ship of Saskatchewan, a non­profit agency, be­came the new pro­gram op­er­a­tor es­tab­lished by industry to over­see tire re­cy­cling in the prov­ince.

Con­sumers will con­tinue to pay re­cy­cling fees to re­tail­ers based on the clas­si­fi­ca­tion of a ve­hi­cle, and the fees will be used for the re­cy­cling of scrap tires and ad­min­is­tra­tion of the scrap tire pro­gram.

Fees will re­main the same un­der the new pro­gram op­er­a­tor.

“The con­sumer likely won’t see much for changes,” Ko­tyk said.

Ul­ti­mately, the de­ci­sion was up to the Saskatchewan Scrap Tire board about whether or not to dis­solve — that was their de­ci­sion.

MICHAEL BELL

Brodie Luther piles used tires be­hind Foun­tain Tire. Re­cy­cling of scrap tires in the prov­ince will now be the re­spon­si­bil­ity of a new non-profit agency, Tires Stew­ard­ship of Saskatchewan.

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