The City of Great Bend Monday will launch a two-week campaign to rid the community of old tires. The city-wide tire clean-up rolls to a conclusion on Oct. 28.
There are no losers with this plan and it is beneficial on so many levels. The effort is part of a recycling project being held in conjunction with Western Ag Services which will make use of the disposed tires. Western Ag will use the sidewalls of the tires to hold down the hay tarps it makes. The treads will be stored at the site for a short time before they are recycled by another company and turned into mats for livestock housed in feedlots.
Nothing will go to waste.
According to the Environmental Protection Agency, the US generates around 300 million scrap tires annually. Historically, these scrap tires have taken up space in landfills or provided breeding grounds for mosquitoes and rodents when stockpiled or illegally dumped. Fortunately, markets now exist for 80.4 percent of these scrap tires-up from 17 percent in 1990. These markets – both recycling and beneficial use – continue to grow. The remaining scrap tires are still stockpiled or landfilled, however.
Fortunately, we live in a county where even the landfill works hard to get rid of old tires. The Barton County Landfill charges a fee for accepting tires, but it works with a recycler who hauls them away.
But, for the next couple weeks, Great Bend residents will have the opportunity to shed themselves of these unwanted items at no cost. They just have to deliver them to the Great Bend Compost Site.
There are rules and limits, and the site will be monitored to discourage illegal dumping.
Anyone with old tires is encouraged to take advantage of this effort. We have a city sanitation office that is aggressively targeting blighted properties to improve the community’s image. This clean-up drive is just another attempt to make this a more beautiful place to live.