Continental Creates New Sus­tain­abil­ity De­part­ment

For many years, sustainable and responsible management has been an integral part of Continental’s Tires corporate strategy and development. Now the tire maker has bundled all activities and projects in a newly created department under the leadership of Claus Petschick. The new department is part of its “Vision 2030” strategy program and with Claus Petschick as its head, Continental is consolidating its far-reaching activities and research projects and continuing its commitment to further systematic expansion of sustainable business models and innovative products and services along the entire value chain,” the company said.

The focus of the sustainability strategy is on the four strategic topics of climate change mitigation, clean mobility, circular economies, and sustainable supply chains. In order to make the tires of the future even more energy-efficient and environmentally friendly in terms of production, use and recyclability.

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Continental is systematically investing in the research and development of new technologies, alternative materials, and environmentally compatible production processes.

This includes the extension of product service life through retreading. In 2013, Continental built the ContiLifeCycle plant in Hanover, Germany, specially equipped with integrated retreading systems, setting standards in the field of tire recycling.

Continental TiresContinental has also been working to reduce its import of natural rubber and produce it as close as possible to the tire plants to prevent ongoing deforestation and reduce the CO2 emissions generated through long transport routes. In future, the multiple award-winning, long-term Taraxagum project from Continental and the Fraunhofer Institute for Molecular Biology and Applied Ecology (IME) will supply natural rubber from dandelion plants, which can be used for producing motorcycle, car and commercial vehicle tires.

Double awards for Conti dandelion rubber bike tires

The Urban Taraxagum bicycle tire is Continental’s first series-produced tire manufactured using natural rubber from the dandelion plant. It is impressive on two fronts: the tire made from dandelion rubber has won the prestigious Red Dot Design award and was recently awarded the E-Bike Design & Innovation Award in the Sustainability & Green category by the magazine Focus E-Bike (focus.de, March 21, 2020).

While the Red Dot Award is awarded for the design of the tread of the tire, which is based on the cell shape of the dandelion cell, Focus E-Bike commended the sustainability of rubber extracted from dandelions.

​As far back as March, the ‘Dandelion Bicycle Tire’ was recognized with the IF Taipei Cycle d&i Gold Award and last year with the sustainability award from the e-bike manufacturer Accell Group.

In the future, Continental’s long-term Taraxagum proj-
ect will be to supply natural rubber from dandelion plants, which can be used for the production of two-wheel, passenger car or commercial vehicle tires as well as other vehicle parts made of natural rubber. Continental has already produced the first test tires for passenger cars and trucks.

The Urban Taraxagum bicycle tire has been produced in the Continental bicycle tire plant in Korbach in the German state of Hesse for two years and is available both in-store and online.

© Scrap Tire News, July 2020