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It is estimated that 486,000 scrap tires, that can be use for Recycled tire arts, instead are burned or dumped at sea, or end up in Cerro Patacon landfill. Once in the landfill, a used tire can take up to 500 years to break down. Instead of contributing to this serious problem, why not turn this waste into art. That is just what Chad Hebert and Jenny Tassell Hebert do with these old tires. They turn them into colorful works of art with a purpose.
Tire recycling or rubber recycling is the process of recycling vehicles tires that are no longer suitable for use on vehicles due to wear or irreparable damage (such as punctures). These tires are among the largest and most problematic sources of waste, due to the large volume produced, their durability, and the fact they contain a number of components that are ecologically problematic. It is estimated that 259 million tires are discarded annually (data is for the 1980s and 1990s). The same characteristics that make waste tires problematic, their cheap availability, bulk, and resilience, also make them attractive targets for recycling. Nonetheless more than half of used tires are simply burned for their fuel value. Even in advanced countries like Germany, 55% are estimated to be burnt for fuel. Tires are also often recycled for use on basketball courts and new shoe products. However, material recovered from waste tires, known as “crumb,” is generally only a cheap “filler” material and is rarely used in high volumes. They are made to be highly durable and weatherproof, which causes mass landfill space to be used up, as tires are non-biodegradable.
The toucans are cut and shaped from old tires that Chad finds discarded on the side of the road and the result are these beautiful toucan hanging planters. They are handmade and painted and in the spirit of ‘reduce, reuse, recycle’ they are an amazing way to reuse items that otherwise contribute to Panama’s waste. The birds look beautiful with a lush fern or flowery plant and can be purchased from the home of Jenny Hebert in Cardenas, 6671-9803.
Based on Recycled tire arts, is $75 per bird at gift for someone for Earth Day coming up in April, to hang in your finca, or in your backyard from a tree. In addition to these planters Jenny also makes and sells adjustable baby slings called PanaSlings. Her facebook page is www.facebook.com/PanaSling where she can also be reached about purchasing the birds.