4 eco-friendly floor solutions

December 23, 2014

Eco-friendly floor solutions are not only great for the environment, but they can be a stylish and affordable flooring choice for your home, too. 

4 eco-friendly floor solutions

Your top choices for eco-friendly floorings are bamboo, linoleum, cork, and reclaimed or recycled hardwood. Here we’ll break down the details of each sustainable option.

1. Reclaimed/recycled hardwood

The destruction of our planet’s rainforests have reached an alarming rate. About 100 acres of rainforest continue to disappear every minute, and it will be gone forever in a generation or two if this continues.

  • If you’re itching for wood floors in your home, but want a clean conscience, reclaimed or recycled hardwood floors are a great choice.
  • Using wooden planks “harvested” from abandoned barns or old homes and factories means forests don’t need to be ravaged for your chic interiors.

2. Bamboo

Bamboo has become a very trendy choice for environmentally friendly flooring, but not all bamboo is created equal.

  • Bamboo requires only about five years from seed to harvest, making it a quick growing and highly sustainable option.
  • Cutting the stalk does not kill the whole bamboo plant, since it sprouts from the clump.
  • Bamboo floorings are very loft or condo friendly, as they create a chic, modern space.
  • Did you know that bamboo actually creates 35 per cent more oxygen than a grove of trees of the same size?

However, the cultivation and processing may cause other problems for the environment, ranging from the quality of the resin used to bind the planks and the distance it has to travel to your supplier, to the possibility that other trees were displaced to plant bamboo groves.

3. Cork

Cork flooring feels wonderful to walk on. It’s soft, comfortable, and literally puts a little spring in your step, since it’s shock absorbing.

  • Cork comes from the bark of the cork oak tree, which does not destroy the tree and is very durable and water-resistant.
  • Since cork floors are warm, they’re a great option for basements, which tend to get chilly.

4. Linoleum

The retro flooring option is enjoying a resurgence in popularity, due to its eco-friendly nature.

  • In fact, linoleum is often an architect’s go-to eco-flooring in commercial spaces.
  • It’s also becoming increasingly popular in homes, particularly in kitchens and playrooms.
  • Just ensure you're choosing real linoleum flooring, and not a synthetic version containing eco-unfriendly polyvinyl chloride (PVC).
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