Studies show the tyre/road abrasion caused by vehicles in motion contributes to microplastic and fine dust pollution, making this an issue our industry will increasingly have to consider in future. ZF Test Systems believes its new unit for testing tyre abrasion will enable tyre manufacturers to optimise their development programmes and offer cleaner tyres.
Emissions Analytics caused a stir last week when sharing news of its tyre wear pollution testing. It reported extraordinarily high levels of tyre wear pollution. The European Tyre and Rubber Manufacturers’ Association (ETRMA) has now responded with a statement that challenges Emissions Analytics’ testing procedure while keeping the door open to further dialogue on the subject of tyre and road wear particles (TRWP).
One effect of regulatory-driven decreases in vehicle emissions is that other kinds of pollution become comparatively higher. The contribution of tyres to overall transportation pollution has been scrutinised on a number of occasions, and opinions on the matter vary. Emissions Analytics now brings the issue of tyre pollution back to the table, flagging up that they’re much more polluting than car exhausts.
Professor Richard Thompson OBE, who leads the International Marine Research Unit at the University of Plymouth, has questioned claims made by the Marine Conservation Society relating the role played by tyre wear in marine microplastic pollution.
Greenpeace anti-diesel campaigners held a peaceful protest aimed at blocking Volkswagen staff from entering the company’s head office in Milton Keynes on 20 August. Representatives from the organisation, which is demanding the manufacturer stops producing diesel cars, arrived at 7am and set up a ‘diesel pollution clinic’ outside the building’s entrance.
In response to the Mayor’s Clean Air Summit and proposals to bring forward the Government’s ban on new petrol and diesel sales from 2040 to 2030, Caroline Russell AM, Chair of the London Assembly Environment Committee said:
Tyres aren’t part of the food chain and they certainly don’t belong in our air and water. Even the powers that be realise this and the government says it will work to combat the problem. The how and with whom of this was outlined in the draft Clean Air Strategy 2018 document released by Environment Secretary Michael Gove on 22 May.
Four million euros are being invested to reduce olfactory emissions at the Continental tyre factory in Timişoara, Romania. The investment will facilitate an expansion of the plant’s regenerative thermal oxidiser system in order to stop odours arising from tyre production wafting beyond the factory site.
An article has recently appeared in the British Medical Journal warning of the dangers to public health in the UK caused by air pollutants. In 2011 a report from the House of Commons Environmental Audit Committee suggested that the costs to society from poor air quality were on a par with those from smoking and obesity. Air pollution has fallen sharply over the last 25 years, in particular nitrogen oxide levels have dropped by two thirds and particulates have halved. However, whilst the pollution levels have fallen, the medical profession is now better able to quantify the damage caused.
The European Automobile Manufacturer’s Association (ACEA) has voiced its surprise and disappointment at yesterday’s announcement that Euro 6 diesel cars will not be included in Category 1 of the new French colour coding scheme, which classifies vehicles according to their pollution levels.
Scientists from the University of Leicester will be taking to the streets in electric vehicles (EVs) fitted with specialised air monitoring sensors, with the intention of measuring the extent of air pollution in city environments. The Air Quality Group at the University of Leicester has collaborated with Cenex, the UK’s First Centre of Excellence for Low Carbon and Fuel Cell technologies, who specialise in bringing new low and zero emission vehicle technologies to the UK roads.