EPA Recognizes Carpet Recyclers

Three carpet recycling programs were awarded for their efforts as part of the Carpet America Recycling Effort (CARE) Annual Conference, including Mohawk Industries as “Recycler of the Year.”

For Mohawk, which has been manufacturing carpet products for 120 years, the award was for its GreenWorks brand. In addition to producing this carpet line with renewable resources, such as corn, as well as recycled plastic bottles, the company operates a GreenWorks Post-Consumer Recycling Center in Georgia that reprocessed 15 million pounds of carpet into thermoplastic nylons last year alone.

Mohawk Industries won "Recycler of the Year" for its Green Works line. Photo: Kellyscarpetomaha.com

Mohawk Industries won "Recycler of the Year" for its GreenWorks line. Photo: Kellyscarpetomaha.com

The EPA partnered with CARE to present separate awards to the Shaw Industries’ Evergreen Nylon Recycling facility and the Los Angeles Fiber Company.

  • Shaw has recycled 220 million pounds of nylon carpet since 2007, along with 36 million pounds of carpet filler.
  • Los Angeles Fiber has recycled 464 million pounds of carpet since 2000, over 40 percent of the total amount collected since CARE began tracking carpet recycling amounts in 2002.

While Mohawk recycled less carpet than the other two recycling facilities, the company has pledged a “total recycling solution in which NO carpet component is either discarded to landfills or is sent to waste incineration.”

CARE is a partnership between members of the carpet industry and government agencies like the EPA to increase the recycling and reuse of post-consumer carpet in the U.S. The group hopes to divert 40 percent of carpet from landfills by 2012.

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Trey Granger
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  1. Glad to see this problem becoming a reality. Need more info on how we might recycle the carpeting
    on our property. Mainly, how long does it take to start to break down if made of natural products and
    will it create an odor if used to develop paths in landscaping. How deep should they be buried if this is
    the only way to avoid odor??

  2. Nancy,
    I work with Shaw Industries which, as you can see from the above article, is extremely focused on reclaiming and recycling used carpet. Unless you are sure that the carpet you have is made from completely biodegradable materials (100 percent) I would recommend investigating options for recycling and reuse through local collectors and recyclers who can channel it to various recycling and/or energy recovery processes depending on what kind of fiber the carpet is made from and what kind of backing it has. Feel free to email me if you would like more information – I’d be happy to help out.

  3. Emma,

    My partner and I have developed a use for recycled commercial carpet. It doesn’t matter if its nylon 6 or 6.6 we can use both in our process. Does your company currently use the products in a viable product are they recycled for energy use?

  4. I collect recycled pad and carpet want to know leads on how to get more and price for product if you guys can help …

  5. Allen and Phil,
    We move large quantities of post consumer carpet padding and carpet and can get you the best prices and quick payment terms. Email me with your contact information and I will call and discuss your best posible options.

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