Once Thought Great Idea, Artificial Tire Reefs Now Leaking Toxins

France is reversing failed project
By Rob Quinn,  Newser Staff
Posted Sep 24, 2018 3:34 AM CDT
A diver inspects an artificial tire reef off the coast of Florida.   (AP Photo/Sun Sentinel, Anastasia Walsh)
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(Newser) – Divers in France are removing what was considered a great idea in the 1970s and 1980s: an artificial reef made up of thousands of old tires. More than 25,000 tires were sunk off the coast of the French Riviera to create a habitat for marine life, but fish avoided the area and the tires were found to be leaking toxic chemicals, the BBC reports. "Grouper fish, conger eels, and sea bream swim around them, but no species really got used to it," Denis Genovese, head of an association of local fishermen, tells AFP. Tire manufacturer Michelin is partially funding the operation. Similar projects are being reversed in other parts of the world, including Florida, where storms have dislodged many of the 2 million tires dropped in bundles off the coast of Fort Lauderdale in the 1970s. (Read more tires stories.)

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