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The Life Of A Tire Essay

1161 words - 5 pages

This paper will follow the life cycle of a Michellin tire. It will start with the raw material that is used, manufacturing, transfer to distribution channels, use and recycling of tire when it is no longer able to be used on an automobile. It is my assumption that people should be aware of where their products come from for a couple of reasons. One if consumers are aware where their products come from and how they are made they may be more apt to be more environmentally conscientious. Two manufactures would also feel more apt to make more green products out of fear of backlash from environmentally friendly consumers. Many do not understand that tires greatly impact the environment their carbon footprint is 92% which is much greater than the carbon footprint of a truck tire’s (Michelin Tires, n.d). The energy used to keep cars moving forward, or rolling resistance; this can equal up to one tank of fuel for every five tanks that cars use and one tank for every three tanks for trucks (Michelin Tires, n.d).
First Stop:
Almost every tire begins with natural rubber; rubber is obtained from the Para rubber tree (Hevea brasiliensis) trees grown in the ASEAN region of Thailand, Indonesia, Malaysia (Shuhaimi, Othman, Ismail, & Sasidharan, 2013). Mostly all rubber comes from these areas because the tropic Rainforest climate is conducive for growing rubber trees. The rubber is gathered from the trees by tapping them, a metal half straw is placed in the tree and a white milky substance is extracted. This is normally done by the indigouseness people, normally women who are poor and uneducated. The pay they are given is extremely low (Bettencourt, n.d).
Although the work is hard, life on these farms are normally better than what they come from. Michelin and the local governments set up schools, a medical clinic, and a mobile dentist's office in the area where they live.
The incomes that they receive is $292 a month this may sound extreme low but this income is higher than most Brazilians. Brazil's minimum wage rate of $133 a month, or $1,600 per year (Bettencourt, n.d).
Car Tire Production Second Stop:
Manufacturing a tire is a complicated one that involves several complex parts that must come together. The general process of constructing a tire involves assembling of many different components of a tire. These parts are then vulcanized together to achieve the desired end product. The average tire built across the country will be the given specifications of a section width of 205 mm, aspect ratio of 45%, and the wheel rim diameter is 17 in (Colbert, 2009). Each of these production stages has an environmental inventory of its own. The process of my tire began with the mixing basic rubber with process oils, carbon black, accelerators and other additives (Michelin Tires, n.d). It is necessary to analyze the environmental impact of the raw materials entering the mixing process in the manufacturing plant to assure there will be success to get the desired end...

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