CalRecycle just approved changes to the California's Carpet Stewardship program in a move expected to bolster carpet recycling in California.
Carpet America Recovery Effort, or CARE, administers California’s carpet stewardship program, which was established following enactment of AB 2398(Pérez) in 2010. The goal of the stewardship program is to divert carpet from landfills and recycle it into products such as new carpet, carpet cushion, plastic automotive parts, and building materials.
CARE’s stewardship plan includes recycling rate goals of 16% by 2016 and 24% by 2020. To date, however, the rate has not exceeded 13%, and CalRecycle deemed CARE to be out of compliance with its stewardship plan, which requires demonstration of continuous and meaningful improvements.
In order to increase carpet recycling, CARE issues per-pound incentive payments to processors and recyclers of used carpet. These payments are funded through an assessment added to the purchase price of new carpet.
CARE’s proposed changes to the existing plan includes increasing the incentive payments for specific carpet material and new incentive payments for material that was not covered in the program before, such as calcium carbonate, which is part of carpet backing, and for carpet tiles.
To cover these additional payments, the carpet stewardship assessment that retail customers pay on new carpet purchases will increase from 5 cents per square yard to 10 cents per square yard. The new assessment will add about $5 to the cost of carpeting an average home.