A gym made of rubber recycled from end-of-life tyres for the winning school of the competition “For a correct recycling of end-of-life tyres”, the educational project of Legambiente and Ecopneus the non-profit company among the principal managers of end-of-life tyres in Italy – that involved 21 middle schools in Apulia with in-class activities and lessons tied to the correct recovery of end-of-life tyres.

Now in its 4th edition, after last year in the “Terra dei Fuochi” (Land of Fires) area, this year’s competition involved the Apulian children in the creation of a video with a message related to good practices for the correct recovery of end-of-life tyres (ELTs).  A jury of experts composed of representatives of Legambiente, Ecopneus, the Ministry of Education and the Ministry of Environment all evaluated the work and assigned the first prize to class II C of the “Perotti-Ruffo” Comprehensive State School in Cassano delle Murge (BA).  Ecopneus then created a new surface made of recycled rubber at this school in which 900 kg of recycled rubber powder obtained from the processing of 173 ELTs was used.

Ecopneus donated some common areas where the kids can study or hang out together, with seating and floors made of rubber recycled from end-of-life tyres, to the other two finalist schools – class IV C of the “Rosa Luxemburg” Artistic High School, specialized in audio-visual and multimedia arts in Acquaviva delle Fonti (BA), and class III-IV A of the “Einaudi-Grieco” Institute for Higher Education, Commercial Services – Advertising Graphics Section.

The project of Ecopneus and Legambiente showed the kids the concrete result of a correct management of end-of-life tyres that transforms them into useful goods for everyone thanks to the contribution of the citizens and all those responsible for the management cycle up to the recycling that Ecopneus guarantees.  It is for this reason that the students visited a crushing facility this year to see first-hand what happens to end-of-life tyres when they are correctly managed. An awards ceremony was held on the same day to conclude the time with Ecopneus, and was conducted by the journalist Luca Pagliari; it was the ideal closure of a process that has demonstrated how it is possible to actively do something about the area’s environmental emergencies, while at the same time educating the new generations about legality and respect for the environment.

Ecopneus has always flanked its operational commitment throughout the area with attention to promoting awareness and training, in particular in the younger generations, in order to promote an atmosphere of ethics and legality that contaminates everyone, citizens and companies alike, in parallel to the daily activities that allowed over 247,568 tonnes of ELTs to be sent off for recovery in Italy last year, of which approximately 21,152 tonnes in Apulia alone”.  These are the words of Giovanni Corbetta, the Director General of Ecopneus“Only the daily choice of each individual against illegality can definitively contrast and eliminate the flows of illegal abandonment that still persist throughout Italy.”

“Through this project we have given the young generations tools for awareness to contrast improper civic behaviours that often supply the chain of lawlessness.  Their response gives us hope: three places in our region have been rehabilitated thanks to the positive energies that the Legambiente and Ecopneus project has set in motion.  We believe that seeing first-hand that it is possible to improve ones area has been a great motivation for these kids to bet on the future,” commented Stefano Ciafani, the National Vice-President of Legambiente.