The more I've been riding lately, the more I've been appreciating how sustainable bike travel can be, so when I was swapping out a punctured tube last night for a nice new one, I started wondering if anyone does anything to recycle or re-use these old tubes or tires. Melting down the rubber (if it's possible), using them for art projects or other uses, or even sending them back to the manufacturer for them to re-use the valve stem seems like a few good ways to generate less waste. I've seen the guy on the internet who makes furniture out of old bike parts like rims, tires and tubes, but I'm thinking more on the large scale. I have to imagine that lots of popped tubes end up in the dumpster every day.
I haven't really had a chance to research this yet, but I thought I'd post a thread here first to ask if anyone knows if people or companies are doing anything about this. If I find anything out later, I'll be sure to post it here.