WASTE TIRES AND INNOVATION

waste-tire-and-innovation

                   Figure. Creative use of Waste Tire by TGG Mentees Batch -II under Mentor                                                                    Anil Chitrakar 

                           Ever wondered about the tires which are no longer roadworthy after they are used? They are stockpiled, dumped in landfills, or just thrown away on roadsides. This linear product use approach results in a massive waste.

              Tires, whether it is electric, solar powered, gasoline, or hydrogen fueled vehicle, are indispensable components for the transportation industry. Scrap tires have potential to harm local environments and negatively affect human health. The most common problems associated with waste tires are open air fires and the creation of breeding ground for rodents and mosquitoes. It’s bad but it’s a fact. According to The Freedonia Group Report it is estimated that the world demand for tires is forecast to rise 4.7 percent per year through 2015 to 3.3 billion units, approximately same amount of tires are disposed of every year and almost 20% of them are illegally dumped in landfills, or just thrown away on roadsides.

              Is this the end of the story? No, a these approaches can ultimately lead towards right environmental choice and would also make good financial sense.

Circular Economy

              The alternative to the growing waste concerns is to develop a circular economy which goes much further than recycling and there is a strong business case for development. Building recycling industries to recover, recycle and process the waste tires – with the focus on the reduce and reuse principles, unemployed people can find gainful employment, SMEs can be developed and, the environmental disaster that waste tires represent can be economically and effectively addressed. Analysis by McKinsey estimates that shifting in this direction of circular economy model could add $1-trillion to the global economy by 2025 and create 100 000 new jobs within the next five years. It’s worth it!

Energy

              A normal used passenger car tire weighs 7.2 kg; it contains at least 238 MJ of thermal energy, which can be useful in some dedicated facilities. In thermoelectric plants, tires are fed into the hearth without any pre-treatment or slicing. This process is an economically viable alternative for used tires that cannot be effectively retreaded, generating a large amount of by-products. Each ton of input (as tires) generates 287 kg of solid residue made of zinc oxide, ferrous slag and gypsum, each with a well-defined market. The use of old tires as fuel has the advantage that it does not generate any waste beyond what is usually generated by a standard cement production process. Sliced tires can be fed into the kiln with the other raw materials. The energy in the rubber provides the heat while the combustion residues are incorporated in the cement without compromising the product’s quality. The ferrous material from the steel wire partially substitutes the large quantities of iron ore used in cement production. Several fuels are used in a cement plants including coal, natural gas and oil. The rubber may provide roughly 20% of the heat required in the kiln, generally at a lower cost than the other fuels. The high temperature of combustion, around 1400°C, under appropriate supply of oxygen, ensures complete burnout of the organic material.

Construction Applications

              Rubberized asphalt is an alternative to traditional paving material that combines the strength and versatility of asphalt and the longevity and flexibility of recycled rubber. Derived from scrap tires, the material is said to be longer lasting, safer, less costly and friendlier to the environment than traditional paving materials.

              Scrap tires can be processed into ground rubber to modify asphalt thereby creating rubberized asphalt and rubber asphalt concrete. Asphalt companies buy large quantities of shredded rubber crumbs to mix with their hot melt asphalt to make pavements cheaper. Other road construction companies purchase large quantities of medium sized shredder tires to use in road beds for minimizing vibrations and for highway sound barriers. Rubberized asphalt is not just sustainable, but actually better than the traditional alternative, better in every way.

              Old tires can be used in barriers such as collision reduction, erosion control, rainwater runoff, wave action that protects piers and marshes. With a blend of art and engineering, the civil engineering applications of waste tires are emerging.

Re-Purpose

              We can use old tires in child’s play areas. They’re great for setting up an obstacle course or making a sandbox or a tire swing. Tire mulch is also sold as padding for children’s playground. We can make soles for shoes or even entire pairs of flip-flops. We can make livestock feeders or pet house out of old tires. Used tires can be transformed into furniture with a little pie of skill and imagination. Since tires are black and they retain the heat from the sun easily, you can use them in your garden for growing your plants earlier. Basically, you can grow plants and veggies in tires earlier than in the ground. This trick works great with those species that require more warmth. You can make an outdoor storage bin using old tires secured together with some plywood and painted in your favorite color. Old tires can be transformed into a cool coffee table or other cool pieces of furniture. Just dive, there’s a world of thing you can do. Re- think!              

              It has been years since we dumped the opportunities for business through valuation of the waste. But, an era is evolving to turn the wastes in every bin into something really spectacular and create value. It is a new shift in the resource management approach, a transition to the unexplored territory and it provides battle against the traditional inertia of waste management. This is the way towards sustainable economies and eco-innovation, and can drive development across the board. This benefits all of us.

About the authors:

Bipin Karki is a graduate student of Renewable and Clean Energy at University of Dayton, and Former TGG Mentee at WWF Nepal (carried out project to reuse tires). He can be reached at bpn_krk@hotmail.com

Bishnu Parajuli is a undergraduate student of Industrial Engineering at Institute of Engineering, Thapathali Campus and the President of Society of Industrial Engineering Students – Nepal. He can be reached bishnu.parajuli13@gmail.com.

As Published in : http://www.sajhapost.com/2017/01/11/58081.html

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A walk to Remember: Journey to Listhikot VDC (Chang Ching Village)

                     Travel is one of best way to learn things and explore beyond comfort zone. The less travelled road, after major Earthquake Nepal 2015, left Araniko Highway connecting Kodari to Kathmandu sees fewer commuters. After postponing my trip to Listhikot VDC for several times due to roadblock, it was finally decided to pack bag and hit the highway. After 5 hours of bus ride from Old bus park of Kathmandu we reached Barabise around 5:30pm in evening. As heavy and daily rainfall had brought several landslides blocking road access to Listhikot. So we decided to pursue journey following day hoping roadblock will be clear next day.

                  Ironically there was heavy downpour last night, which completely ruined our plan to travel by bus. We planned to go via any vehicle to Nayapool and then hitchhike uphill to Chang Ching (a village among several village of Listhikot VDC). It was early morning so there was less chance of getting any vehicle, as vehicle plying had reduced significantly after closure of Lasha border. We asked lift for every passing vehicle finally our luck turned out, we got lift from a truck-carrying quarry for ongoing hydropower project at Chaku. (Middle Bhotekoshi Hydropower Project) After an hour journey we reached at Nayapool at 7:00 am. We passed through Nayapool, a spot for bungee jumping and other various adventurous activities hosted by The Last Resort.

                       The uphill journey through fallen houses, temporary shelter of people and terrible sheds for animal brought chill on us. It felt like no presence of any authority or government in vicinity. The uphill walk made us so exhausted we had to make several stops and we ran out of water, which made journey more arduous. The steep hill, heat of sun and lack of water made walk difficult. After 3 hours of walk we reached first house of uphill village. We asked for water, owner of house very generously provided clean water (filtered water) for drinking. He expressed his grievances after earthquake, the losses and tragedies he had to go through.

                 Personally I found him quite traumatic and his odd behavior expressed those fear and anxiety. He said still he couldn’t sleep inside his house at night so generally he prefers sleeping in open space at smooth surface in uphill area. There have been repeated landslides, fracturing of land mass and majority of water sprouts around village area have been dried up. We could witness his saying when we roamed around village.

                     After few minutes walk from his house we reached our final destination Chang Ching village. The main aim was to inspect community kitchen made in Buddhist Gumba for approval of budget from government as fellow traveller was appointed as Civil Engineer in charge for re construction and rehabilitation in Listhi VDC. The journey provided very insightful things, difficulties at grass root level and presence of resentment about state. It came to light people are affected more as there is no income as Lasha border is closed as working as seller or vendor and purchasing daily goods for livelihood. Now they do not have proper shelter to live in, jobs to work and are purchasing Indian goods at higher rate.

                   This journey made me realized ground reality of many Nepalese life from ground zero up.

Yarcha Gumba : A conflict within itself

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     Yarcha Gumba

                        Yarcha Gumba which is half insect and half plant found on meadows above 3500m is a rare medicinal herb that grows in Nepal. The collection of herb was legalized in 2058 B.S (2001 A.D) Generally season for collection of herbs begin around may after melting of snow which usually last for two months.

Use

     Believe to be Chinese ancestor medicine discovered around 15th century. Similar to discovery of coffee, once eaten by goat and getting stimulated, yak grazed on meadows got stronger and people came to know about existence of herbs.

Collection

  • Located on ‘Patan or Lak'(local language for hills and meadows)
  • Locally called Kira, Jeevan buti, Cheyou
  • Found on high altitude, tough job to extract with high vision power to detect
  • Uncertain trail and lack of proper path
  • No time to set up camp as collection starts from early morning to late morning
  • Uncertain weather like snowfall, landslide, heavy downpour
  • Risk of damages on herbs as it leads to significant decrement on price
Collection of Yarcha at Lek

   Collection of Yarcha at Lek

Collector

  • Every employee and student around region join the expedition
  • Different age group people children, adult, old folks
  • Many small, medium and large business man along with middle man come for buying and transporting herbs
  • Not only collector, businessman but entertainer, facilitator, small shop install, portable shop operate with full swing

Adversity during collection

            Risk                                                                           Crime

  • Lek (Altitude Sickness)                               – Attacks Among Self
  • Coldness                                                           – Loots
  • Falling off from cliff                                      – Cartel
  • Avalanche                                                         – Misuse
  • Landslides

Market : Main market is China

Social Issues

  • Sustainability : The collection is random and mis-managed so in long-term more exploitation will lead to extinction of herb.
  • Solid waste Management: The collectors used fast food for daily food and throw plastic bags around meadows. The human waste and temporary living can cause significant accumulation of solid waste in region.
  • Leaving Cultivation : People have given up their traditional cultivation and entirely relying on herb collection for income generation. Dependency of people on collection has increased while it is bringing end to traditional locally available jobs.
  • Maintenance of Life cycle of herbs: There is no any proper records or survey regarding status and conservation of herbs. How can we protect it from over encroachment by people and how its life cycle be promoted.

Positive Impacts

  • Employment: Collection, transportation and selling has been seasonal jobs for local people during seasons but they are giving up their jobs and entirely relying on collection for whole year budget management.
  • Increase in Life Standard: The cash flow has significantly improved living standard of people but raised alarm about sustainability of life. There is major challenge life is only better till there is herb in meadows.
  • Development of Local Area: Obviously local area has been developed. Better access to road, health, education e.t.c can be seen.

Negative Impacts

  • Self Grading: There is no proper regulatory body for grading of herbs. Self grading is helping middle man so local people are not actually not getting pay how much they actually have to get.
  • Collectors not actual receiver of benefits: The local people get significantly less money than other businessman involve in this sectors.
  • Environmental impacts no study: There is no proper environmental survey regarding growth ,impact, availability and life cycle of herbs.
  • No Accountability: There is no documentation regarding collection, distribution and use of herbs.

Suggestions:

  • Shifting Collection: The areas should be separated every year so we can give chance to grow herbs in particular areas. This will help to preserve environmental aspects that herbs play for ecological diversity.
  • Artificial Culture: Conducting scientific research so we can artificially culture herbs for commercial use.
  • Confirmation of Use: Use of yarcha gumba is still vague so proper study should be done so we can take it as commercial herbs.
  • Limitation of collection: We should restrict and make possibility of only collection on limited amount.

    Image source : HimaliSanchar