Tire removal in Illinois to target virus-carrying mosquitoes

An Illinois agency will soon collect used tires from abandoned properties and rural roads in an effort to reduce the risk of illnesses carried by some mosquitoes.

The Chicago Tribune reports that the state Environmental Protection Agency will focus its efforts on the southernmost parts of the state, which are most vulnerable to mosquito-borne viruses such as West Nile and Zika.

State EPA spokeswoman Kim Biggs says one tire can produce more than 10,000 adult mosquitoes in a breeding season.

The agency is still deciding where exactly it'll collect tires, some of which are already being gathered by local agencies. Biggs says most of the tires will be shredded and recycled or reused as fuel.

The effort will be paid for partially by a state fund that collects a $2.50 fee for each retail tire consumers purchase.
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