Birmingham Drivers Need To Be Tire Smart

City Ranked Last in Tire Pressure Survey

For more information contact:
Dan Zielinski
(202) 682-4846
dzielinski@rma.org

WASHINGTON, D.C.June 30, 2010 - Before hitting the road for the July 4th holiday, Birmingham drivers need to pay more attention to their tires, according to the Rubber Manufacturers Association. The tire manufacturer trade group conducted a vehicle tire pressure survey that ranked Birmingham last among more than 30 U.S. cities.

Only eight percent of Birmingham vehicles had four properly inflated tires and two out of every three had at least one under inflated tire. Nearly one in five vehicles had a tire under inflated by 8 pounds per square inch – a significant loss of tire pressure.

Nationally, under inflated tires contribute to more than 600 fatalities and 33,000 injuries annually according to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration. Additionally, low tire pressure can cost motorists up to 9 cents a gallon at the gas pump. Under inflated tires cause a vehicle to work harder and burn more gas.

The RMA survey of more than 6,300 vehicles in 33 cities this year also found only 17 percent of vehicles had four properly inflated tires. More than 15 percent, representing 38 million vehicles on U.S. roads, had at least one tire under inflated by 8 pounds per square inch (psi).

The cities that performed worst in the RMA tire pressure survey — in descending order — were Dallas/Ft.Worth, Los Angeles, Orlando, San Antonio and Birmingham. These cities had low percentages of vehicles with four properly inflated tires and larger percentages of under inflated tires.

“Under inflated tires are dangerous, waste fuel and money and cause tires to wear out faster,” said Dan Zielinski, RMA senior vice president, public affairs. “Motorists can help reduce the safety risk and stop wasting gas and money by taking five minutes to check tire pressure every month.”

The Rubber Manufacturers Association, which represents tire manufacturers, has some simple tips to check tire pressure properly:

  • Check tire pressure every month and before long trips – and don’t forget the spare!
  • Remember to check tires before driving – when tires are cold – to get an accurate reading.
  • Use the correct tire inflation pressure, which can be found on a label on the driver’s door or check the owner’s manual. Don’t look at the tire sidewall, which has the maximum pressure for the tire.

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The Rubber Manufacturers Association is the national trade association for the rubber products industry. Its members include companies that manufacture various rubber products, including tires, hoses, belts, seals, molded goods, and other finished rubber products.

Safety From the Ground Up This July 4th

Check Tires Before Hitting the Road

For more information contact:
Dan Zielinski
(202) 682-4846
dzielinski@rma.org

WASHINGTON, D.C.June 30, 2010 - Nearly 140 million vehicles in the U.S. may start the July 4th holiday by wasting fuel and risking safety all because of under inflated tires. A survey by the Rubber Manufacturers Association (RMA) found that 55 percent of vehicles had at least one under inflated tire.

Under inflated tires contribute to more than 600 fatalities and 33,000 injuries according to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration. Additionally, low tire pressure can cost motorists up to 9 cents a gallon at the gas pump. Under inflated tires cause a vehicle to work harder and burn more gas.

The RMA survey of more than 6,300 vehicles in 33 cities this year also found only 17 percent of vehicles had four properly inflated tires. More than 15 percent, representing 38 million vehicles on U.S. roads, had at least one tire under inflated by 8 pounds per square inch (psi).

The cities that performed worst in the RMA tire pressure survey — in descending order — were Dallas/Ft.Worth, Los Angeles, Orlando, San Antonio and Birmingham. These cities had low percentages of vehicles with four properly inflated tires and larger percentages of under inflated tires.

“Under inflated tires are dangerous, waste fuel and money and cause tires to wear out faster,” said Dan Zielinski, RMA senior vice president, public affairs. “Motorists can help reduce the safety risk and stop wasting gas and money by taking five minutes to check tire pressure every month.”

The Rubber Manufacturers Association, which represents tire manufacturers, has some simple tips to check tire pressure properly:

  • Check tire pressure every month and before long trips – and don’t forget the spare!
  • Remember to check tires before driving – when tires are cold – to get an accurate reading.
  • Use the correct tire inflation pressure, which can be found on a label on the driver’s door or check the owner’s manual. Don’t look at the tire sidewall, which has the maximum pressure for the tire.

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The Rubber Manufacturers Association is the national trade association for the rubber products industry. Its members include companies that manufacture various rubber products, including tires, hoses, belts, seals, molded goods, and other finished rubber products.

Tire Makers Urge Drivers to “Air” On the Side of Safety, Savings

New Survey Finds 55% of Vehicles Have At Least One Under Inflated Tire

For more information contact:
Dan Zielinski
(202) 682-4846
dzielinski@rma.org

WASHINGTON, D.C. June 7, 2010 - A new survey being released for the ninth annual National Tire Safety Week (June 6-12) shows that millions of drivers around the country are failing to properly maintain their tires and are putting themselves at risk while wasting gas and money.

The nationwide survey, conducted by the Rubber Manufacturers Association (RMA), found that fifty-five percent of vehicles had at least one under inflated tire and only one in six vehicles had four properly inflated tires.

RMA is the national trade association for tire makers who manufacture in the U.S. The group worked with several tire retailers to collect actual tire pressure measurements from more than 6,300 vehicles in more than 30 cities. (To see a map with results from individual markets,visit www.betiresmart.org.)

Best/Worst Performing Cities

The survey’s best performing cities, those with a higher percentage of vehicles with four properly inflated tires, were Honolulu, Baltimore, Boston, Providence and Charlotte. At the bottom of the list were Dallas/Ft.Worth, Los Angeles, Orlando, San Antonio and Birmingham.

2010 National Survey Findings

• 17 percent of vehicles had four properly inflated tires.
• 55 percent of vehicles had at least one under inflated tire.
• 15 percent of vehicles had at least one tire under inflated by 8 pounds per square inch (psi).
• 20 percent of vehicles had at least one tire under inflated by 6 psi.
• 31 percent of vehicles had at least one tire under inflated by 4 psi.

Compared to a similar survey last year, motorists showed some improvement in tire care habits. This year almost twice as many vehicles had four properly inflated tires as had last year.

During National Tire Safety Week, RMA strives to educate motorists about the importance of proper tire care.

“National Tire Safety Week is the tire industry’s opportunity to focus on consumer education,” said Charles A. Cannon, RMA president and CEO. “Our industry’s top priority is safety.”

Proper Tire Inflation Saves Gas

Properly inflated tires can improve fuel efficiency by 3.3 percent and save nine cents per gallon at the pump, according to the U.S. Department of Energy. Approximately 1.2 billion gallons of fuel are wasted each year by U.S. motorists driving on under inflated tires.

Under Inflated Tires Pose Safety Risk

Under inflated tires also pose a safety risk. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) estimates that under inflated tires contribute to more than 600 fatalities and 33,000 injuries each year.

Tire Pressure Monitoring System Doesn’t Replace Monthly Tire Check

Although all new vehicles are now equipped with tire pressure monitoring systems (TPMS), these systems issue a low pressure warning only after tire pressure drops 25 percent below the vehicle manufacturer’s recommended pressure. In many cases, an 8 psi loss of pressure would not be enough to trigger a warning light and would cause a loss of fuel economy and could lead to a vehicle safety issue. Even with TPMS, motorists need to check tire pressure with a tire gauge every month.

Quick Tire Care Tips

Motorists should check tire pressure once each month; check tires when cold – before the vehicle is driven and; use the vehicle manufacturer’s recommended pressure found on a label located on the driver’s door, door post or owner’s manual.

“Checking your tires at least once a month is an easy way to improve your safety, and the safety of those on the road around you, while reducing the costs of vehicle ownership,” said John Nielsen, AAA, Director of Auto Repair and Buying Services. “Catching and correcting problems early, such as low tire pressure or uneven tread wear can greatly extend the life of your tires.”

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The Rubber Manufacturers Association is the national trade association for the rubber products industry. Its members include companies that manufacture various rubber products, including tires, hoses, belts, seals, molded goods, and other finished rubber products.

House Committee Approves Measure That Threatens Manufacturers’ Proprietary Business Information

Increased Disclosure of Early Warning Information May Harm Tire Makers in U.S

For more information contact:
Dan Zielinski
(202) 682-4846
dzielinski@rma.org

WASHINGTON, D.C.May 28, 2010 - A House committee approved legislation this week that requires the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) to make public more information that is reported to the agency by automobile, tire and automotive parts manufacturers.

The Rubber Manufacturers Association (RMA) voiced a number of concerns with the Motor Vehicle Safety Act of 2010, HR 5381. The group has voiced similar concerns with a companion measure in the Senate, S 3302.

“RMA strongly supports and our members fully comply with the current early warning reporting system to provide federal safety regulators with information to help enhance motorist safety,” said Charles Cannon, RMA president and CEO. “However, RMA and its members are very concerned that this bill may result in NHTSA disclosing critical business information that will cause competitive harm to manufacturers in the U.S.”

A 2000 federal law mandated NHTSA’s Early Warning Reporting System. Automotive industry manufacturers are required to report substantial amounts of production and performance data and consumer claims to the agency to assist federal safety officials with identifying potential safety issues. Consumer claims regarding fatalities, injuries and property damage claims are currently made public on NHTSA’s web site.

When NHTSA created the Early Warning Reporting System, it also created categories of information that would be protected from public disclosure as confidential business information. For tire manufacturers, this included production data, warranty claims and common green tires, which are tires that have not been cured.

“NHTSA conducted a rigorous process using strict Freedom of Information Act principles to develop a federal regulation that balanced public disclose of some early warning information with the need to protect some critical business data it receives each quarter from manufacturers,” Cannon said.

The Motor Vehicle Safety Act also includes a mandate requiring a brake override system in vehicles to help prevent the possibility of sudden unintended acceleration. Additionally, the measure gives NHTSA the authority to declare that a vehicle, tire or automotive part presents an “imminent hazard” to motorist safety. Such a declaration would allow the agency to impose a range of remedies to force manufacturers to address a potential safety issue.

The bill also boosts federal penalties on manufacturers for safety-related issues to a maximum of $200 million. The House version would allow individuals to sue the agency if they disagree with an agency determination in answering a petition to investigate a possible vehicle defect.

“Permitting lawsuits to overturn NHTSA’s thorough investigation of potential safety issues would force the agency to divert critical resources to redundant tasks and legal defenses to answer likely lawsuit challenges to defect petition decisions,” Cannon said.

The House bill is expected to go to the House floor in the coming weeks. A Senate committee is expected to consider its version of the bill in early June.

“We will continue to engage with legislators and work toward a reasonable solution that enhances motorist safety while addressing the risk to RMA members’ competitive business information posed by this bill,” Cannon said.

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The Rubber Manufacturers Association is the national trade association for the rubber products industry. Its members include companies that manufacture various rubber products, including tires, hoses, belts, seals, molded goods, and other finished rubber products.

Rubber Manufacturers Association to Restructure

Tire, Elastomer Products Group (EPG) to Become Separate Organizations

For more information contact:
Dan Zielinski
(202) 682-4846
dzielinski@rma.org

WASHINGTON, D.C.May 19, 2010 - The Rubber Manufacturers Association’s Board of Directors has approved a plan to restructure the organization to better serve the interests of its membership.

The restructuring will result in two separate organizations – one that represents tire manufacturers and one to serve the needs of elastomer products manufacturers.

Each organization will be an independent 501(c)(6) trade association with its own board of directors, officers, budget and management.

The tire organization will retain the Rubber Manufacturers Association name and remain in the Washington, D.C. office. The new elastomer products group will adopt a new name and will be headquartered in the Midwest.

“The new elastomer products group will have greater opportunity to provide services that meets the needs of small to medium-sized rubber manufacturers and their suppliers, while operating in a lower cost environment,” said Charles Cannon, RMA president and CEO. “The focus will be on communication, member services, networking, and technical support.

“RMA will focus its resources on the U.S. tire manufacturing sector which continues to face a number of public policy challenges specific to this sector,” Cannon said. “Meanwhile, EPG executives will be able to focus on re-establishing an entity that will be uniquely designed to focus solely on EPG companies with greater flexibility for growth and a reduced cost model.

The executive leadership of both sectors are dedicated to maintaining a cooperative relationship for issues of mutual concern.

To begin the process toward creating the new elastomer product manufacturer organizations, a June 9 meeting has been scheduled in Fairlawn, Ohio for all interested companies to attend.

This initial meeting will feature a number of presentations focusing on potential objectives for a new organization, practical business-related topics and will provide a networking opportunity for elastomer product manufacturer executives. Veyance Technologies, a current EPG member of RMA, is hosting the conference.

“This initial event will be an opportunity to educate current EPG members and potential new members about the prospects for a new organization that can better focus on the needs of elastomer products manufacturers,” Cannon said. “We are confident that companies will be able to establish a new organization that will deliver improved value and more focused services.”

All companies interested in attending – both current EPG members and non-members – should contact Jenny Taylor at (317) 863-4072.

RMA Awards Industry For Achievements in Worker Safety

For more information contact:
Dan Zielinski
(202) 682-4846
dzielinski@rma.org

WASHINGTON, D.C.May 4, 2010 - Fifty-five tire and rubber manufacturing facilities are being recognized for improvements in worker health and safety.

RMA’s Safety and Health Improvement Program (SHIP), created in 1981, recognizes member companies that achieve significant enhancements in worker health and safety with awards.

Two categories of awards are presented to companies that demonstrate workplace safety improvements, which are measured by the incidence rate for lost workday cases. The “Excellence” category is for facilities that achieve an incidence rate that is 75 percent better than the average achieved by plants that provided data to RMA.

The “Improvement” award is for plants that achieve an incidence rate that is both 10 percent better than its rate in the previous year and the same or better than the RMA average incidence rate.

One hundred thirteen plants from twenty-eight RMA member companies supplied data for the annual survey to determine the extent of workplace safety improvements. The data supplied to RMA is identical to information provided to the federal Bureau of Labor Statistics, which publishes injury and illness information on all industries.

Click here to view the winners by plant category and award type.

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The Rubber Manufacturers Association is the national trade association for the rubber products industry. Its members include companies that manufacture various rubber products, including tires, hoses, belts, seals, molded goods, and other finished rubber products.

“Air” On the Green Side This Earth Day: Check Tire Pressure

Properly Inflated Tires Help Consumers Be Green, Save Green!

For more information contact:
Dan Zielinski
(202) 682-4846
dzielinski@rma.org

WASHINGTON, D.C.April 21, 2010 - Consumers can be green and save “green” for Earth Day just by checking their vehicle’s tire pressure.

The Rubber Manufacturers Association (RMA), the national trade association for tire manufacturers in the U.S., says that properly inflated tires can improve vehicle fuel efficiency and help motorists burn less gas, reduce emissions and save money, too.

“Earth Day is great time to consider simple ways to help our environment,” said Dan Zielinski, RMA senior vice president, public affairs. “An under inflated tire wastes fuel. When a tire loses air, it takes more energy to keep it rolling efficiently. To make matters worse, under inflated tires will wear out faster, which means replacing tires more often – which uses more energy and causes consumers to spend additional money.”

The federal government estimates that properly inflated tires can improve fuel efficiency by 3.3 percent, saving consumers about 8 cents per gallon at the pump.

Plenty of vehicles are wasting fuel. According to a 2009 tire pressure survey by RMA, about half of all vehicles have at least one under inflated tire. Worse, nearly 20 percent vehicles have at least one tire under inflated by 8 pounds per square inch (psi) – a significant loss of pressure.

RMA recommends that motorists check tires once per month and before long trips. The correct tire pressure for vehicles is located on a sticker on the driver’s door or in the owner’s manual. Tires should be checked before driving.

For more information, visit www.betiresmart.org.

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The Rubber Manufacturers Association is the national trade association for the rubber products industry. Its members include companies that manufacture various rubber products, including tires, hoses, belts, seals, molded goods, and other finished rubber products.

RMA Says Proposed Federal Ozone Rule is “Inappropriate”

 EPA “Short Circuiting” Regulatory Process; Will Add Huge Costs, Little Benefit

For more information contact:
Dan Zielinski
(202) 682-4846
dzielinski@rma.org

WASHINGTON, D.C.April 19, 2010 - A new proposed federal regulation aimed at reducing ozone short circuits the regulatory process, adds as much as $90 billion in costs to businesses and has an adverse effect on air quality, according to comments filed by the Rubber Manufacturers Association.

Under the federal Clean Air Act, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) is required to evaluate National Ambient Air Quality Standards (NAAQS) for ground level ozone. In 2008, President Bush’s Administration issued new ozone standards. Eighteen months later, the Obama Administration decided to reconsider the new standards.

“EPA’s decision to revise the NAAQS for ground level ozone short cuts the process for revising the NAAQS established in the CAA (Clean Air Act) and in the process the [EPA] Administrator is not relying on the “latest scientific knowledge” regarding the public health and welfare as the statute requires,” RMA wrote. “The Clean Air Act establishes a clear process for reviewing and revising NAAQS over a five-year period. EPA’s proposed revised ozone NAAQS bypass that statutorily mandated process.”

RMA also said that the health science evidence does not demonstrate that a new standard is justified. “In simple terms, EPA is proposing to reduce the primary ozone NAAQS based largely on clinical studies showing respiratory effects—but no apparent health effects—in sensitive individuals at 0.060 ppm (parts per million), and on epidemiology studies that EPA believes suggest there may be effects of exposure to ozone concentrations below 0.075 ppm,” RMA said in its comments. “The clinical studies, however, did not demonstrate a clear adverse health effect from exposure to ozone concentrations below 0.075 ppm, even in the harsh conditions of the clinical tests.

“Furthermore, these same clinical studies were reviewed as part of the 2008 Ozone NAAQS final rule and did not justify a lower standard at that time. It is inappropriate for EPA to now use this dated information to justify lowering the 2008 ground level ozone standard.”

Worse, EPA’s decision to revise the 2008 ozone standards will result in less improvement to ground level ozone concentrations and increased burdens on state and local agencies.

“EPA’s decision to revise the 2008 ozone standards to a more stringent limit of 0.060 – 0.070 ppm will, under the circumstances, impede rather than improve human health protection measures,” RMA said.

EPA’s rulemaking schedule would have a final rule by August 31, 2010; final designations by August 2011 and; state implementation plans for the reconsidered standards by December 2013.

“This abbreviated schedule is unrealistic, in RMA’s view, in light of experience and especially for the completely new form of the secondary standard,” RMA said. “And in any event, litigation over the proposed revisions could further delay implementation of the revised NAAQS standards. The effect of delaying implementation will result in less improvement in ground level ozone concentrations because states will continue to implement the 1997 8-hour standard of 0.08 (effectively 0.084) ppm rather than the 2008 8-hour standard of 0.0750 ppm.”

For the tire industry, the effect of this revised standard will be extremely burdensome.
RMA member facilities are predominantly located in rural areas that are currently designated as attainment areas. An attainment area is one that has “attained” an ozone level that complies with federal regulations. A “non-attainment area” is one that exceeds federal regulations for ozone.

Under the EPA proposed revision, many RMA member facilities will be in non-attainment areas. Facilities located in a non-attainment area face increased operating costs, permitting delays, and restrictions on expansions. Additionally, facilities located in counties that are designated as “severe” or “extreme” non-attainment face significant penalty fees under the Clean Air Act. An increase in the number of non-attainment areas as a result of the proposed rule will significantly impact states and counties that must find the resources to comply with the additional burdens of being in non-attainment.

The costs for a revised ozone rule are estimated to be significant while the benefits are limited. EPA estimates that revising the primary standard to a level at or near 0.060 ppm would produce annual benefits of $35-100 billion in 2020. Annual costs, however, are projected to be $52-90 billion.

“In other words, even using EPA’s optimistic assumptions about attainment status, costs, and benefits, there is a good chance that the costs of meeting the revised NAAQS would exceed the benefits by billions of dollars,” RMA said. “If EPA lowers the primary ozone NAAQS to a level at or near 0.070 ppm, EPA projects annual benefits of $13-37 billion and annual costs of $19-25 billion. Again, even with EPA’s dubious assumptions it is entirely possible that the costs would exceed any benefits.”

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The Rubber Manufacturers Association is the national trade association for the rubber products industry. Its members include companies that manufacture various rubber products, including tires, hoses, belts, seals, molded goods, and other finished rubber products.

Colorado Senate Committee Approves Scrap Tire Measure

 Bill Directs More Resources to Cleanup, Enforcement and Market Development

For more information contact:
Dan Zielinski
(202) 682-4846
dzielinski@rma.org

WASHINGTON, D.C.April 15, 2010 - A Colorado Senate Committee approved comprehensive legislation this week to reform the state’s scrap tire laws. More than 60 million stockpiled scrap tires are in Colorado — one of the few states where piles are growing.

The Rubber Manufacturers Association, representing tire manufacturers in the U.S., has been working to change Colorado’s scrap tire law since the last changes were made to the program several years ago. RMA testified in favor of the legislation this week.

HB 1018, which passed the House in March, was unanimously approved by the Colorado Senate Transportation Committee. The measure will next be considered by the Senate Finance Committee.

“HB 1018 is the result of eight months of negotiation among all major scrap tire stakeholders in Colorado,” said Michael Blumenthal, RMA vice president, who testified in support of HB 1018. “If enacted, Colorado will be able to address some of the gaps in their program, while focusing on market development and continued stockpile abatement.”

Colorado currently imposes a $1.50 fee on new tires that should be used for enforcement of state scrap tire regulations, cleanup of waste tire piles and market development.

“Unfortunately, Colorado has not effectively managed scrap tires,” Blumenthal said. “The state has the greatest number of tires in stockpiles in the nation and unless the system is changed, those piles will continue to grow.”

HB 1018 would:

  • Place more of the scrap tire funds directly into scrap tire activities.
  • Consolidates all waste tire programs under the Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment (CDPHE) and establishes new requirements for scrap tire market development, fire planning and prevention, waste tire hauler regulations, and waste tire facility regulations.
  • Creates regulations that will benefit the state and the scrap tire industry, closes gaps in the regulation that will decrease the incidence of unlawful dumping of tires.
  • Creates an advisory committee that can provide on going review and evaluation of the program that will increase the likelihood of constant improvement to the program.

“We will continue to press Colorado lawmakers to enact this legislation,” Blumenthal said. “The measure is long overdue and urgently needed. We are grateful to the House and Senate sponsors of this legislation and will work with them to see this bill enacted.”

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The Rubber Manufacturers Association is the national trade association for the rubber products industry. Its members include companies that manufacture various rubber products, including tires, hoses, belts, seals, molded goods, and other finished rubber products.

RMA Co-Hosts Fourth Conference on HIgher- Value Added Ground Rubber Products

For more information contact:
Dan Zielinski
(202) 682-4846
dzielinski@rma.org

WASHINGTON, D.C.April 5, 2010 - The Rubber Manufacturers Association (RMA), the Arkansas Department of Environmental Quality and the Arkansas Association of Solid Waste Districts, the South Carolina Department of Health and Environmental Control (DHEC) and the Asphalt Rubber Technology Service (ARTS) of Clemson University will host the fourth “From Scrap-to-Profit” conference, the nation’s only event dedicated to the use of ground rubber in the highest value-added markets.

The conference will be held on November 3-4, 2010 at the Peabody Hotel in Little Rock, Arkansas. The Scrap-to-Profit conference will be preceded by the EPA’s Resource Conservation Challenge (RCC), Scrap Tire Workgroup meeting on November 2. The EPA’s RCC Scrap Tire Workgroup is a collaborative effort consisting of Federal and state officials along with members of the rubber industry. The goal of the RCC Working Group is to provide a venue where all interested parties can meet, exchange information and develop projects that will assist the recycled rubber industry.

The 4th From Scrap-to-Profit conference will have discussions on all the major, higher value added markets such as molded/extruded products, infill, playground cover and mulch.

General topics will include the human & environmental health concerns of ground rubber, market development for specific products and state approaches to market development, achieving consistent quality of ground rubber, the new ASTM specifications for infill and playground material, a survey of ground rubber markets and ground rubber supplies, as well as selected case studies on developing new markets.

“The From Scrap to Profit conference has continued to evolve into a venue where all the major topics impacting the ground rubber products market can be discussed,” said RMA Vice President Michael Blumenthal, who also is the conference co-organizer. “We continue to meet our goal to provide a substantive agenda that reflects the needs and interests of the recycled tire rubber industry,” Blumenthal added.

Information on the conference can be obtained at www.rma.org orwww.scraptoprofit.com.

“The recycled rubber industry is facing many challenges today, but we also believe there are many opportunities in the marketplace for recycled content rubber products,” Blumenthal said. “This conference provides stakeholders with valuable information and opportunities to share experiences to further assist the scrap tire market to become more profitable and stable.”

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The Rubber Manufacturers Association is the national trade association for the rubber products industry. Its members include companies that manufacture various rubber products, including tires, hoses, belts, seals, molded goods, and other finished rubber products.