Tires photo identifier


Waste tire pile cleanup near Toledo, Washington
(June 2007)


The waste tire removal program is funded out of the statewide capital budget, which is currently on hold. Because of this, Ecology will not be able to fund waste tire cleanups and amnesties until the Washington state legislature comes to an agreement on the statewide capital budget. We should know more on the progress of this budget in January.

What happens to waste tires in Washington:

Waste tire recycling, reuse and landfilling data are updated annually. Most of the tire data on this page are reported for each calendar year. Only the waste tire program financial data are reported based on Ecology's fiscal year, which starts in July and ends in June (for example, Fiscal Year 2010 is July 1, 2009 to June 31, 2010). Each document and table clearly identifies the use of Calendar or Fiscal year.

Every April, businesses report recycling, reuse, and disposal data to Ecology for the prior calendar year. These data are usually available in the fall for the previous calendar year. The data provided for tire recycling and reuse can also be found in the annual solid waste report. Additionally, Ecology estimates the generation of waste tires based on the number and type of vehicles licensed in the state.

Recycling, reuse, and disposal data are reported to Ecology from the following sources:
  • Annual disposal reports from landfills, transfer stations, drop boxes, tire haulers, tire businesses and tire storage sites.
  • Reports and survey responses from recycling facilities.
The Waste Tire Data document provides the latest data.

What Ecology is doing about waste tires:

In 2005, the Washington State Legislature created the Waste Tire Removal Account to fund tire pile cleanups. This account is funded with a $1 fee collected for each new vehicle tire sold in Washington. In 2009 the law was revised to require a portion of the tire fee revenue be transferred to the Washington State Department of Transportation (RCW 70.95.532). Since 2010, Ecology manages an annual tire budget of $500,000.

The following table summarizes Ecology's use of funds for waste tire removals since 2007. More details are provided below.

Waste Tire Cleanups

Calendar Year Tons of tires removed Funds spent
2007 32,671 $ 4,300,079
2008 8,112 $ 1,882,295
2009 11,217 $ 2,648,464
2010 3,157 $ 762,018
2011 352 $ 112,415
2012 1,900 $ 476,661
2013 1,868 $ 328,204
TOTAL 59,278 $ 10,510,137

Tire efforts from 2011 to 2013:
Ecology uses Waste Tire Removal Account Funds for waste tire efforts identified by local governments and other public entities for waste tire pile prevention, cleanup, and education. Projects funded since 2011 are listed in the Tire Project Table.

Older tire efforts:
Ecology used Waste Tire Removal Account Funds to cleanup tire piles around the state from 2007 to 2010. Additional waste tire fee funded cleanups occurred in the late 1990s. A summary of those efforts is provided in the Tire Cleanup Table document.

A detailed list of cleanup sites from 2007 to 2010 is available in the Cleanups 2007-10 document.

How Ecology has used the waste tire fund:

A $1 fee on the sale of new replacement tires funds the Waste Tire Removal Account (Fund 08R). Tire retailers started collecting this fee on July 1, 2005 (Fiscal Year 2006 is July 1, 2005 to June 30, 2006). The tire fee is not collected on the sale of tires to the federal government that are exempt from sales tax; sale of tires delivered to enrolled tribal members living on recognized reservations; or sale of retreaded vehicle tires or tires provided free of charge under the terms of a recall or a warranty service (WAC 458-20-272). If a customer returns a tire and is refunded the entire selling price, the $1 tire fee is refundable as well.

The Waste Tire Fund document provides details on the funds collected and Ecology's expenditures.

Who can store or haul waste tires:

Storage of more than 800 waste tires (or the combined weight of 16,000 pounds of waste tires) requires a solid waste handling permit and may require a waste tire storage license. The tire list identifies only the licensed storage sites. Sites that operate with a solid waste handling permit are not tracked at the state level.

Hauling more than 5 waste tires requires a waste tire carrier license. The tire list identifies the companies that are licensed waste tire carriers for Washington State.

Businesses that haul their own waste tires for recycling, repair, exchange or disposal are not required to have the waste tire carrier license.

Companies with a solid waste collection license from the Washington Utilities and Transportation Commission are not required to obtain a waste tire carrier license.

Go to the Fees and Licenses page for more information about a waste tire storage or waste tire carrier license.