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SAMBITO helps with a clear pathway to develop projects that have a positive impact on the environment. The innovation propelled and guided by SAMBITO is Seginus, which is a company that processes used tires to give them a second life and synthesizes tires in order to be used in other processes like the construction of ecological roads or in energy assessment. Thus, SAMBITO can cover up some SDGs. Firstly, by recycling the tires they mainly cover the Sustainable Communities and Cities, reducing the C02 footprint helping the community by reducing the contamination caused by used tires. Moreover, they support Sustainable production and consumption patterns by converting tires into other forms of energy, floors, materials for artisans, among others.
Seginus follows a circular economic system where they look forward to recycling tires without use. Recycling saves striking amounts of energy, which ultimately reduces harmful emissions such as greenhouse gasses. Tires take about 500 years to decompose and buried tires never decompose. The rubber in tires is quite difficult to recycle due to their large volume, tensile strength, resilience, and its consistency of elements that are toxic for the environment and to our health - hence, used tires are one of the most problematic sources of solid waste.
There are several reasons for which this innovation adheres to the organization's goal, which is to create new value for the tires at the end of their useful life in the hopes of it benefitting society.
Starting with the city of Guayaquil, Seginus has complied with Target 11.6 by retreading more than 1 million tires, recycling more than 3 million tires out of use, and collaborating with more than 50 municipalities for handling of sanitary landfills. These municipalities represent more than 30% of the Ecuadorian territory and provide 3000 people with job opportunities in the process.
By recycling more than 4 million tires as of today, not only has Seginus fulfilled Target 12.5, but they have also significantly reduced their carbon footprint. Recycling four tires alone reduces CO2 by 323 lbs, which is equal to 18 gallons of gasoline.
Moreover, regarding SDG 11, they could obtain the conservation of landfill space, since tires take up a vast amount of space in landfills. Tires are notorious for trapping harmful gasses such as methane in the void spaces. After a while, these gasses tend to bubble to the surface which in turn may reach the surrounding environment and pose a serious threat to the health of many. Thus Seginus has made it easier for landfills in Ecuador to conserve space for items that cannot be recycled and prevents these harmful gasses.
On the other hand, Seginus is in charge of collecting unused tires and delivering them to a production plant. At this plant, the tires are converted into a bituminous mixture for asphalt, granulated material for sports fields, handicrafts, and co-generation of energy.
From this, they are able to make various products for the automotive market as well as for the home or footwear. Thereby, it can be seen how the company supports sustainable consumption and production patterns. Firstly, they carry out a “responsible management of chemicals and waste”- Target 12.4, by significantly reducing the pollution that tires release when they decompose. They release toxins such as zinc, chromium, copper, and sulfur, which have carcinogenic or mutagenic properties that contribute to the contamination of the soil and waterways. Moreover, they want to “substantially reduce waste generation through prevention, reduction, recycling and reuse” - Target 12.5, and also they are promoting “practices that are sustainable, in accordance with national policies and priorities” - Target 12.7. Seginus works in parallel with AM 098, which is a manual for the comprehensive management of used tires.
Finally, it is interesting to know that in order to start the process of the recycle, the final consumer must pay an “eco-value,” which currently is $1 per tire, then people can use the app to connect and arrange the pickup of the used tires, and finally these are transported to the processing plant in order to give them a second useful life. This way, Seginus contributes to battle contamination by collecting used tires which most of them end up on the streets, which are a fountain of possible sources of diseases such as “dengue.” This whole new value chain has helped the creation of new working positions.
The existence of tires is fundamental for the development of today's society. 4,500,000 tires are sold approximately every year in Ecuador. Many of those will reach their useful life without proper management and they will become a source of pollution that affects the environment and human health.
The main objective for which Seginus was created, was to set an example not only to the country but also to the world, of how circular economy models work and are virtuous. “They not only have a positive environmental effect, but also an economic and social one," says José Javier Guarderas, executive director of the corporation.
The motivation arises from the willingness to change traditional production systems, based on produce, use and throw away. They wanted to propel a circular production system where “residues become raw material that can be used both for producing the same product or for a different one." Moreover, it arises from the fact that they were looking forward to “ensuring compliance with the standards established by the authority for the recycling and use of end-of-life tires in the market.”
In a world in which man tends to consume continuously, like in the transport industry where loads of wheels are created every day, Seginus creates a circular economy that takes advantage of old tires to build everything from roads to beds for pets. This project has been having a huge impact on pollution, without having to reduce or stop the creation of tires. It is a way of solving a problem without creating a new one.
So far Seginus has managed to recycle more than 4 million tires, has helped more than 500 families by creating “green” jobs and has removed more than 230 thousand tires from landfills. They have also created approximately 300 thousand shoe soles, 150 thousand square meters of rubber, and 300 soccer fields. Another important aspect of their impact is the declaration of Galapagos as a territory free of used tires. All of these achievements have made Seginus become the winner in the Best EPR Scheme category of The Recircle Awards in two consecutive years.
The best part of this project is that it is financed through the payment of the “Ecovalue”, which is the contribution made by the final consumer when purchasing each new tire. The Ecovalue is $1.00 for each light vehicle tire, that is, if you buy 4 tires you will pay $4.00. So as the executive director of Seginus (José Javier Guarderas) says, there has been no customer who has been opposed to paying the Ecovalue, knowing that it is a very low price and that it is a way of recycling waste.
Sambito as a consultant company has helped Seginus to be what it is today. Seginus has had a noticeable increase in the amount of tires processed, amount of help (from part of the government) and amount of reach to the community. Seginus has created a benefit to more than 500 families that depend on the management of this waste, created new investments for the country for more than 7 million dollars, new valuation opportunities for end-of-life tires, and 5 international certification: ISO 9001, ISO 14001, ISO 22301, ISO 27001, Circular Economy Certification; thanks to all of the accomplishments that Seginus has achieved, Sambito as the consultant company of Seginus receives prestige.
Since Sambito started its operations in 2002, the company has been an advocate for a more sustainable environment. Through their services, they have successfully realized 2,284 projects and collaborated with 1,641 clients all in an attempt to aid businesses transition to more environment-friendly and sustainable alternatives.
Sambito is home to an ecosystem of several sub companies that foster the same goal; one of the biggest innovations in the ecosystem that Sambito prides itself on is SEGINUS, a company dedicated to the recycling of tires.
In terms of society:
1. Direct benefit to the 17 million Ecuadorians for the tire collection service at the national level, guaranteeing the universality of the service throughout the territory.
2. Job opportunities for more than 3000 people and 500 families.
3. Signing of agreements with more than 50 municipalities for free targeted management of sanitary landfills, these municipalities represent more than 30% of the Ecuadorian territory.
In terms of environment:
4. Reducing the carbon footprint by retreading more than 1 million tires and recycling more than 3 million tires out of use.
5. Reduction of carbon footprint by optimizing collection management.
How many companies did they help?
Starting with a modest number of 18 member companies in 2018, today there are 59 companies that represent 75% of the national market. Seginus currently represents all these companies before the environmental authority and every year they present the annual management report. All companies have the type of tire importers and the local producer.
Short and long term goals:
1. Continue to search for strategies for new ways of valuing tires at the end of their useful life.
2. Continue adding actors to the SEGINUS initiative until reaching 100% of the national tire market.
3. Promote the Circular Economy of Tires in Ecuador.
Maria Paula Gutierrez, Communications Director
Jacinto Monserrate, General Manager
SAMBITO is an ecosystem of companies that work together to save the planet. They offer environmental solutions to companies and organizations that want to reduce their ecological footprint and want to develop their businesses. Sambito does this through consulting and implementation of environmental and technological projects, with sustainability as mainstay.