Tyre plan will add cost burden to farming

Water and environmental affairs minister Edna Molewa’s new plan for recycling tyres – the Integrated Industry Waste Tyre Management plan – could impose a significant cost on farmers, especially those who use fat-tyred machinery.

- Advertisement -

The plan slaps a R2,30/ kg tyre levy on new tyres, which will be used for the collection and recycling of old tyres by the Recycling and Economic Development Initiative of South Africa (Redisa).

Grain SA senior economist Corné Louw said the levy would be a “huge cost” to farmers. “A tyre can weigh up to 400kg and some big tractors can have eight tyres each. “We’re still investigating the cost implication and trying to find out if there was any consultation about how they decided on the levy,” he explained.

Corrie Taljaard, chairperson of the Tyre Dealers and Fitment Centre Association, said the association had sought legal advice and opposed the Redisa plan. Billing tyres on weight is problematic, he noted. “Your average 205mm tyre, used on passenger vehicles, could pull about R25 out of a consumer’s pocket.” Redisa isn’t addressing the problems of farmers and mines, where some of the road tyres weigh a couple of tons, he added.

- Advertisement -

Gareth Morgan, DA spokesperson on environmental affairs, said the minister has flouted the Waste Tyre Regulations (published in 2009 by her own department) by failing to publish the plan in the Government Gazette for a 30-day comment period. She had also failed to bring it to the attention of relevant organs of state and interested persons.

Morgan said the plan gives Redisa a monopoly over tyre recycling in SA, as manufactures, dealers and importers must subscribe to it as it’s the only plan. He said Molewa should halt implementation for further consultation with industry stakeholders.