UK Group Reports Increase in Carpet Recycling

Carpet Recycling UK reports 30 percent more carpet was diverted from landfills in 2012 than the prior year.

February 4, 2013
Recycling Today Staff
Carpet Forecasts & Statistics

The organization Carpet Recycling UK (CRUK), which is managed by resource recovery specialist Axion Consulting, has reported that the diversion of carpets from landfills in the United Kingdom increased to 21.4 percent in 2012, a 30 percent increase from the prior year’s diversion rate of 16.5 percent.

According to CRUK, 85,000 metric tons of carpet were diverted from landfills last year; CRUK has set a target of a 25 percent diversion rate by 2015.

CRUK notes that of the 85,000 metric tons diverted in the U.K., about 36,000 metric tons was either recycled or reused, while 49,000 metric tons was redirected to energy recovery through cement kilns and power generation plants. The organization notes that energy recovery increased by 44 percent to 15,000 metric tons.

The amount of waste carpet recycled grew in 2012 by 12.5 percent—4,000 metric tons—as new outlets have developed and established ones have grown.

In a release, Laurance Bird, CRUK director, says that the achievements are a testament to sustained efforts across the entire supply chain in capturing rising waste tonnages, plus entrepreneurial commitment to developing new outlets and markets for all types of carpet waste.

“New recycling opportunities continuing to emerge as growing awareness is matched by practical endeavor, so it’s a positive story,” Bird says, highlighting increased recycling capacity at specialist facilities that are able to handle carpets via reuse, recycling and energy recovery.

“While an estimated 78.6 percent of end-of-life carpet still ends up in landfill, our goals for 2013 will continue to drive higher carpet recycling rates through a number of initiatives, including local authority encouragement on segregation,” Bird adds.

Other CRUK goals for 2013 include:
•23.5 percent landfill diversion target;
•Increasing reuse, recycling and energy recovery outlets, resulting in improved choice, collection and transport logistics across the U.K.;
•Recruiting manufacturers, distributors, retail and flooring contractor members to support collection infrastructure growth and improve carpet’s value; and
•Increasing awareness of carpet recycling opportunities and recycler initiatives across the value chain, including waste management and local authority decision-makers.