Carpet absorbs sound, is soft, slip-resistant and often quite beautiful. These qualities make it a common choice as a floor covering for homes and office spaces alike. But, as with any product, various impacts can occur throughout a carpet’s life cycle. Health and environmental concerns associated with carpet include indoor air quality, chemical emissions from manufacturing and disposal operations and solid waste impacts.
Over four billion pounds of carpet enter the solid waste stream in the United States every year. This accounts for more than one percent by weight and about two percent by volume of all municipal solid waste (MSW).
Furthermore, the bulky nature of carpet creates collection and handling problems for solid waste operations. In addition, the variety of materials present in carpet makes it extremely difficult to recycle. By considering a variety of attributes, the Guides for the Use of Environmental Marketing Claims bring attention to the materials used to manufacture and install carpet as well as recycling and disposal issues so that purchasers can make informed decisions about environmentally preferable carpet.
Read the EPA’s advise here: https://www.epa.gov/greenerproducts/identifying-greener-carpet