Contact: Jeremy Stroop, Carpet America Recovery Effort (706) 428-2127
Santa Fe, NM – April 26, 2010 – Carpet America Recovery Effort (CARE) reports that, in 2009, Care members diverted more than 311 million pounds of post-consumer carpet from landfills. Of that amount, 246 million pounds – nearly 80 percent of the total – was recycled back into carpet and other consumer products. Also in 2009, the carpet recycling industry continued its growth trend. There are over 1600 people in the US associated with carpet recycling and diversion. This and other information is contained in CARE’s 2009 Annual Report which was presented at the carpet recycling group’s Eighth Annual Conference held April 26 through April 28 at the La Posada de Santa Fe in Santa Fe, New Mexico.
The past year has been one of significant accomplishments for CARE, said board chairman Frank Hurd. Most notable: a six percent increase in carpet diversion and 561 new jobs resulting directly from carpet recycling. All this during the longest downturn on record for the carpet industry.
“Before the last two years, you had to go back to 1975 and1976 to find two consecutive years of declining sales,” Hurd said, noting that, in 2008, carpet recycling experienced its first-ever decline in carpet diversion. “We are proud of the turnaround we experienced in 2009 and the return to year-over-year increases in both carpet diversion and recycling.”
CARE’s successes are particularly impressive when viewed against the backdrop of economic hard times. Given the current recession, carpet recycling has experienced astounding growth – increasing more than 400 per cent since 2002 when CARE was founded. “While we would all have preferred a larger increase in diversion and recycling in 2009, CARE members can and should be truly proud of their accomplishments,” Hurd said.
The additional jobs due to carpet recycling in 2009 mark a 51% increase over the previous year’s number and represent a bright spot in an otherwise dismal employment landscape nationwide. “Carpet Recycling creates jobs and contributes significant dollars for local and state economies where these jobs are located,” said CARE executive director Georgina Sikorski.