The environmental impact of buying recycled carpet tiles

We all know that climate change is happening and that we all need to be doing more to take care of the planet, reduce our overconsumption of resources and become more environmentally friendly. Here at Envirocycle, we’ve found a way to help with recycling and make it commercially viable – by saving carpet tiles from landfill and selling quality used tiles to our customers.

But just how much benefit to the environment are you making by purchasing recycled carpets tiles from us? We decided to look at some science to calculate a rough estimate of the carbon saving benefits of buying used carpet tiles.

The only prominent study of the amount of carbon that is produced by the carpet manufacturing industry is this American study from 2018. They calculate that to create 0.09 square meters of carpet, produces 4.8kg CO2, so we can say that for every single square meter produced, 53.33kg of CO2 is released. A standard sized carpet tile is 50x50cm, from that we can say that four carpet tiles = 53.33kg of CO2 and one single carpet tile will create 13.33kg of CO2.

Given the variables involved in calculating carbon footprints and the fact that we only have one study as reference, these calculations are not set in stone, but even using them as a rough estimate, we can confidently say that:

A large open plan office in the UK might reach 500 square meters, requiring 2000 carpet tiles and producing in excess of 26 tonnes of CO2, just to carpet the floor. In the UK each year, 400,000 tonnes of carpet tiles are put in landfill, often because there is no easy way to recycle these. Breaking the chain and giving perfectly good carpet tiles a new lifecycle will dramatically reduce the amount of CO2 that is produced by the industry. If just a few hundred offices made the switch to used carpet tiles we could save thousands of tonnes of CO2 every year.

 

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