Montenegro still does not have a legally-regulated method of disposing of or scrapping vehicle tyres. Generally, official landfills do not have permission to store them and there are no facilities for recycling (most likely due to their unprofitability). In the meantime, tyres are dumped next to rubbish containers, are frequently thrown on the side of the road, are burned, or are reused and resold by members of the Roma community.
Although they are non-hazardous, special waste (alongside scrap vehicles, packaging, electrical and electronic equipment, batteries and accumulators), their disposal is not only the problem of the competent institutions, but also of the manufacturers and importers of tyres and ultimately, of individuals.
Herceg Novi, alongside Kotor and Podgorica, is struggling with this problem. Until the state authorities find a solution, the tyres will continue to be the main waste at Duboki Do landfill, and “Čistoća”, the Herceg Novi waste management service, has been granted a licence to use the site.
“It is currently difficult to give a figure as to how many individual tyres are at Duboki Do, but the total amount is somewhere between 80 and 90 tonnes, and that’s only tyres collected last year,” Director of “Čistoća” Vladimir Arsić told Radio Jadran.
“Unlike Tivat, Kotor and Podgorica, where tyres are burned, we received a decision from the Directorate for Waste Management and Municipal Development under the Ministry of Tourism and Sustainable Development, and were given an additional location to where the tyres should be taken, to the existing landfill at Tisove Grede that we correctly filled and fenced off. We were still able to dispose of tyres at the latter, but given that at one point the landfill was subject to burning, we requested permission to dispose of tyres at Duboki Do,” he stated.
Arsić also stated that all tyres were collected at the Recycling Centre, with some being removed occasionally to the Tisove Grede landfill. Others were removed by the company Arabis from Nikšić. This “work” is currently subject to court proceedings, as it was carried out without agreement by “Čistoća”,” claims Arsić.
“We have sued the owner for monthly bills we received for storage at one of his premises close to a house, bills which we subsequently returned. The commercial court did not on any occasion call “Čistoća” to the hearing to explain that someone had removed the tyres without a prior, written agreement between former Director Bonić and the firm,” he claims.
Arsić further claims that they had tried to resolve the issue of waste tyres with a firm from Cetinje, whose site would be used for disposal, however:
“This was before the start of disposal at Duboki Do. The company from Cetinje at the time was the only one with a licence to dispose of tyres. However, we were asked to pay 200 euros per tonne of tyres if we were to transport them ourselves, and 250 euros for removal and disposal. We weren’t in a position to pay that money, although that was actually a good thing, as the firm later lost their licence,” Arsić recounts.
One concerned resident of Herceg Novi recently shared a photo with the Facebook group “Prezadovoljni građani” Herceg Novi, showing a line of tyres several hundred metres long. Arsić explained that the tyres are thrown from the trucks in that way so that the excavator can push the tyres back every 10-15 days to free up space.
He further stated that they did not want to remove the tyres from the recycling centre, however at one point there were so many that trucks no longer had room to manoeuvre, and so authorization was sought to remove them to the landfill site. This was the only solution, as there was no option to transport them to another country where they could be used for other purposes.
Previously, at least at a local level, there had been ideas to construct a site to recycle tyres, as advocated by the former management of the Kotor Municipal Utility Company, headed by Mladen Lučić.
Conversely, burning tyres in the open air, which inevitably happens during the May Day holidays and is practiced by many young people, is prohibited and punishable under the Waste Management Act.
Although there are no precise, official figures, according to some estimates, 200,000 car and around 13,000 truck tyres are imported to Montenegro annually.
Source: Radio Jadran