As time goes on, increasingly we can see the effects that human activity has on our planet. Oceans drying, pollution at its highest rates and many creatures facing extinction. Thus the need to be as environmentally conscious as possible arises. There is a lot we can do, small changes in our routines, habits and preferences can have quite the positive effect on the environment.
Let’s take a moment to reflect on our own lifestyles, in particular that of our homes. We try to instil the best possible aesthetic that our pockets can afford, but that can sometimes come at the expense of our environment. Real wood floors and roofing for even one room in a house can cost the world tens of trees. These gradual and seemingly minor alterations we make to our environment that can create immense problems for us in the future. That is exactly why we have to be sustainable now, and we can start with more sustainable flooring!
Fortunately, we are now observing a very much welcomed surge of environmental awareness in the way that flooring manufacturers operate. A drastic increase of the use of sustainable natural materials such as bamboo and cork have been observed, in no small part because they are:
If you're looking for a quality, naturally sustainable resilient floor covering, look no further than EGGER. Their ‘Pro Comfort Flooring’ collection is made entirely from cork. Cork is harvested from the bark of oak trees and best of all, the tree will be unaffected by this process and the bark will grown back, ready to be harvested again in the future! If you do opt for cork flooring, with its natural properties of heat insulation and noise suppression, don’t expect that haunting creek in the middle of the night as you climb out of bed and take a few steps toward the bathroom. Thanks to advancements in manufacture and digital print technologies, there are dozens of true-to-life designs to choose from and no matter what your tastes are, you will not be damaging the environment acquiring them.
Not into resilient flooring? There are many more alternatives to consider when weighing up sustainable flooring options. You could opt for Econyl’s regenerated nylon, an incredible fibre made by a process of recycling, recreation and remolding. It is largely made up of carpets that would otherwise be destined for land fill, along with thousands of fishnets and other plastic waste recovered from the seas and oceans - plastics that are responsible for killing marine life, making this nylon fibre particularly potent as an environmentally friendly material.
Further to this, by recycling existing oil based materials, brand new products can be created without any of the nastiness caused by the typical plastic manufacturing process.
Manufacturers such as Associated Weavers are now making use of Econyl’s regenrated nylon to create beautiful carpets for you to place in your perfect house. Named after the Inuit Goddess of the seas, within the up and coming SEDNA collection you'll find a carpet for every style, room and occasion. Similarly, on the commercial front you also have Paragon Carpets taking advantage of the incredibly hard wearing properties of Econyl's 6.6 Nylon to produce gorgeous commercially rated carpet tiles. Did we mention that Paragon Carpets also operate out of the cleanest carbon emissions production facility in Europe?
That’s not all! As consumers become increasingly aware and actively display a need for sustainability, manufacturers are required to look into alternative materials and processes in order to harness this growing market. Lano’s Bamboo Luxe is a carpet collection made from a high percentage of bamboo fibre. Practically, bamboo is fantastic because of its moisture suppressing properties and by reducing humidity significantly, it ensures that your walls and floors will last for much longer periods of time. It just so happens that bamboo fibre is also super soft and even has anti-bacterial properties! Just how sustainable is bamboo? Well, it's fast growing, it requires no fertiliser and self-regenerates from its own roots, so it doesn't need to be replanted. Win, win, win.
Still think nothing beats the look and feel of real wood? It'd be worth taking a look at V4 Wood Flooring. All of the timber used in their engineered wood flooring is responsibly sourced from well managed and sustainable purpose farmed forests. This means that only mature trees are selected for harvest, and for each one of these trees felled several more fast growing saplings are planted for the next generation. V4 Wood Flooring also endorse Wood's Good Eco Gold Underlay to be used alongside their own products. Eco Gold is made entirely out of used and disposed tyres that have been pressed, cleaned and remolded into a beautiful underlay that was created to protect your sustainable flooring. It even has an insulating gold foil vapour barrier that limits humidity and prevents any rising moisture that might accumulate.
There are already many flooring manufacturers out there that are focused on the task of becoming more environmentally responsible. They are trying their best to not only encourage individuals to also assume a level of social responsibility, but are also ensuring that a better alternative to traditional materials is available in the market for consumers to choose from.
Who says change doesn't start at home? Money talks folks! As more of us take a step towards a sustainable future by choosing responsible products, manufacturers are increasingly aware that they need to change with us or be left behind.
Want to know more about the latest sustainable flooring products? Get in touch!