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Tires are better converted into aggregate than burned in a kiln

Currently in Nova Scotia, all tires are recycled to make tire-derived aggregate. Burning tires at Lafarge Brookfield would take them away from a local recycling opportunity.
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Lafarge
Lafarge Canada has been producing cement at its Brookfield plant for more than half a century. The company has applied to the Environment Department to burn discarded tires to fuel the cement kiln at the plant. (INGRID BULMER / Local Xpress)

By LYDIA SORFLATEN

Lafarge says whole tires burn without risk.

World-recognized air quality expert Dr. Neil Carman warns that this is unrealistic. Kilns are huge systems that fluctuate in temperature and oxygen, often resulting in incomplete combustion. Lafarge calls this an "upset"!

In Dr. Carman’s words, “Burning of scrap tires in cement kilns creates an array of toxic byproducts such as dioxins, furans, PAHs, and heavy metals. Upsets in kiln operation can result in spikes of toxic emissions and harm the surrounding community. Emissions related to tire burning are extremely toxic to children and are carcinogenic.”

SEE ALSO: Lafarge's new tire-burning plan meets residential opposition

The European experience has shown that burning whole tires creates the potential for more kiln upsets than shredded tires. It is a fact that the outdated 50-year-old Brookfield plant does not utilize the technology possessed by modern European cement plants.

Divert NS has a responsibility to the citizens of the province. Currently in Nova Scotia, all tires are recycled to make tire-derived aggregate (TDA). Burning tires at Lafarge Brookfield would take them away from a local recycling opportunity. Divert NS proudly stated in its 2016 annual report that "tires are converted into TDA, a multi-purpose product that can be used in construction and engineering projects." This means important business and employment benefits.

We have a proven alternative to burning tires in Nova Scotia. The existing use as TDA benefits the local economy and reduces greenhouse gas emissions. It is not right to put our health and environment at risk.

Lydia Sorflaten lives in Brookfield



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