Goodyear Sets the Pace in the Industry With 70% Sustainable-Material Tire


Environmental talk is not a very fascinating or thrilling topic of discussion for the typical customer. We all want quality products at affordable prices, but being preached about their environmental impact or having to pay extra for it to be reduced isn’t exactly a hot selling point. Regardless of how the common man or woman may feel about environmental issues, scientists are saying that we’re past the point where we get to pretend there’s isn’t a problem. The time for action is now, to paraphrase an old movie cliché. The automotive industry is one of the highest pollutants, both during the manufacturing process and afterwards, during the entire product’s lifetime and even beyond. Someone has to think about the impact this has on the environment, which explains why more and more players on the market are turning to more sustainable choices. The Goodyear Tire & Rubber Company is one such significant player, committing to a 2030 deadline for producing tires out of 100% sustainable materials. Goodyear says that the current industry standard is at about 30%, which makes its latest demonstration tire a new industry standard. In short, Goodyear has been able to produce a tire with 70% sustainable-material content. Performance indicators have shown Goodyear that the demonstration tire is capable of delivering strong overall tire performance, while using 70% sustainable materials. These include three different types of carbon black than the one currently used by other makers, derived from methane, carbon dioxide, and plant-based oil. Carbon black serves as compound reinforcement in tires and is usually produced from burning petroleum products; as such, it generates considerable carbon emissions, whereas these other three types don’t as much. Other innovations in the new demonstration tire include the use of soybean oil as a compound to maintain pliability in changing temperatures and rice husk ash-derived silica to improve grip and reduce fuel consumption. Both have a high impact on the product’s final carbon footprint: soybean oil reduces reliance on petroleum-based products, while the rice husk ash from which the silica is made, is retrieved from landfills. The new Goodyear demonstration tire also uses polyester from recycled plastics. “We set an ambitious goal in 2020 to create a tire made 100% from sustainable materials in 10 years, and our scientists and engineers have made great progress toward that goal,” Chris Helsel, senior vice president, global operations and chief technology officer, says of the innovative tire.