Recycling Motorcycle Tires

Climate change is one of the greatest threats facing society today. Little by little, companies are joining the fight to combat it by controlling energy consumption, reducing emissions or recycling. Continental is aware of the importance of responsible production and consumption that respects the environment and leaves a minimal carbon footprint. For this reason, the premium tire manufacturer has gone a step further and announced its partnership with Pyrum Innovation, a company specializing in the chemical decomposition of tires at the end of their useful life.

Continental has signed a partnership agreement with Pyrum Innovation with the aim of optimizing and expanding the recycling of end-of-life tires using the pyrolysis technique. The agreement specifies that in the future a high-quality recovered carbon black (rCB) will be obtained for the production of Continental tires. Continental’s subsidiary Reifen-Entsorgungsgesellschaft (REG) will start supplying end-of-life tires to Pyrum from March 2022.

Dr. Andreas Topp, Head of Development and Industrialization of Materials and Processes at Continental Tires, points out that “Continental has ambitious sustainability targets. That is why we are continually expanding our solutions to support the circular economy. In this respect, we have found a partner in Pyrum who has succeeded in developing a particularly efficient pyrolysis process. With this agreement, we want to further develop pyrolysis processes on tires that have reached the end of their useful life”. Since Pyrum’s IPO in 2021, Continental already holds a strategic minority stake in the company.

For his part, Pascal Klein, CEO of Pyrum innovation says, “We have had a close exchange with Continental for some time now and are looking forward to expanding our collaboration with this agreement. Our business model is already sustainable and, together with Continental, we want to take the next step towards a fully sustainable tire industry.”

Carbon black is a resource used in the production of tires and in the manufacture of other industrial rubber products. In this respect, rCB recovered from end-of-life tires saves fossil raw materials and contributes to a significant reduction in CO2 emissions. Its specific use increases tire stability, strength and durability.

Circular Economy, Part of Continental’s Sustainability Strategy

Sustainable materials and the circular economy are an important part of Continental’s sustainability strategy. This is how Claus Petschick, Head of Sustainability at Continental Tires, explains it. “We believe that the circular economy is the model to follow. That is why, as part of our ambitious sustainability strategy, we will increase the use of sustainable materials in our tire products to 100 percent by 2050 at the latest. Modern and highly efficient pyrolysis processes are very important to achieve such a goal.”