Ahead of the Recovered Carbon Black 2021 workshop, we spoke to Martin von Wolfersdorff - Principal Advisor of Wolfersdorff Consulting and world-renowned rCB expert - to get exclusive insights into recovered carbon black and the tire segment, the biggest challenges faced by the tire sector at the moment and more.
Martin, can you share some insights into recovered carbon black and the tire segment?
Recovered Carbon Black ("rcb") and the tire pyrolysis industry in general are currently getting a lot of attention because big companies like Michelin and BASF have made investments and joint development agreements with tire pyrolysis companies. We also see all other top tire companies exploring collaborations for the recycling of their tires. It is great to see so much activity in tire recycling. We will get out of the pandemic with more sustainability in the tire value chain than we got into it!
What do you see as the biggest challenge in the tire segment at the moment?
Some of current challenges in the tire sector are (1) supply chain disruptions in the long raw material supply chains for natural rubber and carbon black, (2) consumer pressure to increase sustainability and recycling in the tire sector, and (3) tire road wear particles. We currently cannot do much about the road wear particles, but we have technologies and initiatives ready to address sustainability and long supply chains.
Tire pyrolysis can take a center stage in helping tire companies increase the amount of recycled materials in their tires. More than 90% of tire pyrolysis output could go back into the production of new tires. But there are no drop-in product solutions and tire pyrolysis companies have to undertake R&D efforts to collaborate with the tire industry. Several leading tire companies are now building their large scale eco-systems of tire recycling. Michelin's BlackCycle eco-system is an example.
How do you think delegates will benefit from attending this workshop?
This workshop will help delegates from the tire pyrolysis industry in collaborating with tire companies and it will help tire industry delegates better understand best practices and the state of the art in tire pyrolysis, enabling both sides to work together and create tire recycling eco-systems of large scale. Investors and analysts will benefit from this workshop through a better understanding of opportunities and scalability of the tire pyrolysis industry.