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Carpet landfill diversion reaches target

Diversion of carpet waste from landfill reached 28% in 2014, surpassing Carpet Recycling UK (CRUK)’s goal of diverting 25% by 2015.

The trade body said that some 113,000 tonnes of waste carpet were reused, recycled or recovered for energy in 2014. This is a increase of 6,000 tonnes compared to 2013.

Roughly 400,000 tonnes of carpet waste arises annually in the UK.

Of the total diversion, energy recovery accounted for 73,000 tonnes (65%) and reuse/recycling for 40,000 tonnes (35%).

Strong demand from the cement industry for carpets in solid recovered fuel, especially its chalk content, was the driver of the increase in energy recovery.

Carpet recycling saw growth in fibre recovery for felts, because retailers and flooring contractors value the capture of fitting offcuts.

Alternative use of carpet tiles was also strong, with more than 1.2 million (or 330,000m²) diverted in 2014. Tile reuse is expected to grow in 2015 due to WRAP’s Carpet Recycling Guide produced by CRUK.

CRUK director Laurance Bird said: “Our 2014 achievements clearly demonstrate that carpet is now regarded as a valuable resource that can be reused in a variety of innovative applications from energy to underlay.

“Last year enquiry levels from local authorities, waste management companies, retailers and contractors increased compared to 2013, reflecting a welcome and greater understanding of our aims and what we can offer in terms of a sustainable and practical alternative to landfill.”

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