Two Riverside businesses were awarded nearly $300,000 from the California Department of Resources, Recycling & Recovery to manufacture sellable products using discarded tires that would otherwise end up in landfills, it was announced Friday.

Environmental Molding Concepts and Mission Rubber Co. received the grants under CalRecycle’s “Tire Incentive Program,” which encourages companies to make tiles, shingles, traffic cones and other rubber-laden items from tire waste.

“California is proud to provide grant opportunities for businesses that invest in the sustainability of our communities and our planet,” CalRecycle Director Scott Smithline said. “CalRecycle’s Tire Incentive Program helps transform more of California’s waste into a resource for local businesses, while supporting markets for recycled content products.”

Environmental Molding Concepts, which produces floor tiles and mats, received a $161,750 allotment, while Mission Rubber Co., which produces air intake hoses, received $128,000, according to CalRecycle.

The firms were among seven entities in Southern California awarded grants totaling $2.2 million under CalRecycle’s latest distribution.

Officials estimated that the companies’ conversion of about 1.8 million waste tires into usable products will spare landfills from taking on another 21 million pounds of crumb rubber over the next two years.

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