Eco Friendly Flooring - Reclaimed Wood, Bamboo and Cork
For the majority of Americans, our idea of luxurious, comfortable living is wall-to-wall carpeting, as sixty percent of us have carpeted homes. Yet none among us would consciously equate luxury and comfort with the chemicals in conventional synthetic carpeting, or the dust mites, dirt and pesticides that collect there over the years. As much as you will not want to believe this, over the course of its lifetime carpet accumulates so much excess material that it may hold up to eight times its weight! What's worse is it's so packed down and integrated with the carpeting fibers that it's hidden from your view.
Hardwood and tile floors are obvious alternatives as you can keep them squeaky clean, however, the origin of the source materials must be carefully considered. Unfortunately, many people overlook this point, filling their homes with unsustainable wood and vinyl tile flooring.
Choose Eco Friendly Flooring Alternatives
- Reclaimed Wood salvaged from old buildings.
- Cork Floor harvested from the bark of living trees, a process that actually stimulates tree growth.
- Linoleum made from sustainable materials like solidified linseed oil, pine resin, ground cork dust, wood flour and mineral fillers like calcium carbonate.
- Recycled Glass Tile with hundreds of colors to choose from.
- Recycled Rugs made from recycled plastic bottles, candy wrappers, plastic bags or old blue jeans.
Shop Smart if You Opt for Conventional Flooring
If you decide to buy virgin wood, look for seal Forest Stewardship Council (FSC), an international non-profit organization that rates the sustainability of wood, granting the seal to the growth and harvesting of wood that has:
- Been Sustainably Managed
- Not Contributed to Biodiversity or Habitat Loss
- Not Exploited Workers
- Positively Impacted the Local Community
And if you have your heart set on carpet, go for the recycled variety, made of recycled carpet and PET plastic soda bottles. Just remember it will still collect dirt, dust mites and other substances. Frequent vacuuming and steam cleaning (with eco-friendly cleaner, of course) will help.