Carpet Programs

Various stakeholders in Washington and Oregon worked during the past decade to increase public agency purchasing of recycled-content carpet and recycle discarded carpet in the region. In 2002, the Washington Department of Ecology and Oregon Department of Environmental Quality were among the 22 state signatories, along with leaders in the carpet industry, to the National Carpet Stewardship Memorandum of Understanding. The 2002 MOU was an industry-driven solution and was voluntarily agreed to by all parties. Unfortunately, it has fallen drastically short of its 20-25% carpet recycling goal and has only achieved a 4.5% national recycling rate over the last 10 years.

In 2009 and 2010, the Seattle Public Utilities and King County initiated the Northwest Carpet Recycling Strategy Project, which has worked with state and local governments, research university representatives in Washington, Oregon, California and British Columbia, and the carpet and recycling industries, to support the development of carpet processing capacity and end-markets for carpet in the Pacific Northwest. The project’s Northwest Carpet Recycling Strategy (PDF, 84K) that is currently being implemented includes product stewardship as a solution.

Legislation adopted in California and introduced in Washington and New York states requires a carpet stewardship program funded by producers that sell carpet into those states. Visit the Carpet Policies & Legislation pages for more information.