No flooring product has zero impact on our planet, but some green materials are better than others. I have listed a few of the eco friendlier options you might use in your home with both the pros and the considerations that need to be pondered. Bamboo is one eco friendly option. Bamboo is a fast growing grass that can be selectively harvested annually. It is extremely durable and harder than red oak and maple, has 50% less contraction and expansion than wood and is a renewable resource. Cork is another eco friendly renewable resource material made out of the bark of the cork oak tree. Only the bark is used so the tree does not have to be cut down. Cork is great because it often contains recycled content, is easy to clean if properly sealed and gives great foot support. Rubber is another new eco friendly flooring material available these days. Virgin rubber is derived from rubber trees, a renewable resource; recycled rubber reduces the environmental burden of discarded tires.
Linoleum uses the same ingredients today as when it was invented in 1863, linseed oil, cork dust, wood flour, tree resins, ground limestone and pigments, all pressed onto a jute backing. The ingredients are renewable items and often are recycled content, which is good for the planet. Stone is another option to consider for the kitchen. It is a natural resource and a very durable material. Stone, however, is a finite resource, can result in using significant embodied energy if the stone is mined or fabricated overseas and, if the stone requires sealing, the sealers can produce potentially harmful VOC emissions. Tile is another eco friendly durable material if you use tiles that contain recycled content. Tiles are durable, easy to clean and can use recycled materials like broken window panes and recycled granite dust. They do use though a significant amount of energy to fire and transport so try to make sure to look for local sources and make sure they use recycled content. Advantage Development Co. is a Custom Home Builder in Asheville NC that believes in using eco friendly building materials. Call us today at 828-215-9064 or visit our website at http://www.advdevco.com/ and learn why we are the local builder of choice.