The Right Decision-Rubber Flooring
View the study done by architect Suzanne Barnes in the US -but please note this was in 2008 so almost 14 years on -prices are much high yet remain relative to each other!It is assumed that vinyl and lino are being thrown in landfill in Australia and we can’t find any evidence of any recycling at the end of its life.(Please let us know if there is anyone doing this, as we will update our records).
Rubber flooring is one of the most environmentally-friendly and sustainable floorings compared to other flooring products. Each type of flooring, whether it is recycled, synthetic, or natural all can contribute to Green Star points to be able to be used in Green Star or NABERS projects.
Rubber flooring has been at the Old Parliament house in Canberra now for over 60 years. The rubber flooring on the aero bridges at Brisbane Airport has been there over 25 years. Most of our range of rubber flooring products have a guarantee of 10 years but expected to last 15 to 20 years at least.
Each product in our range can be added to the Office Interiors V1 Green Star spread sheet. We will attach a few in the files section, but we can produce them for designers and architects for their projects.
Our most popular product, was the high quality French Dalsouple DalNaturel rubber flooring that had one of the lowest VOC’s on the market. Many cheaper floorings such as some PVC’s have ‘off-gassing’ and can use ingredients that are considered carcinogenic.
In 2019- when DalNaturel was no longer available, we added REMP rubber to fill this gap.
REMP Rubber Flooring and Natural Rubber
Cost effectiveness and product quality are critical commercial ingredients, but in the new design environment they are not enough. Our priorities as consumers, specifiers and manufacturers are changing.
Natural rubber is a wholly renewable raw material, and mature rubber trees are exceptionally efficient at carbon sequestration – the absorption of harmful CO2 from the atmosphere. Rubber is also easy to recycle, not just once but several times, with many potential applications. It has inherently low toxicity, particularly compared to PVC based flooring.
All these factors, combined with a long service life, contribute to an environmental life cycle performance that is worlds away from existing resilient floorcoverings.
10% rubber content is used in REMP rubber flooring so the flooring is certainly suitable for a large variety of installations: in schools, in hospitals, in airports and railway stations, and in residential environments.
It is tough, anti-slip and burn resistant, but feels soft and warm underfoot. It has excellent noise absorption properties, yet is dust free, hygienic and easy to maintain. Please note that 10 % of REMP rubber is an organic material that may contain some small variations in appearance and uniformity compared to its synthetic counterpart.
This is a natural result of the manufacturing process, and part of the product’s unique appeal.
All manufacturers now place great emphasis on their environmental performance. Yet, despite a burgeoning mass of data, it is enormously difficult to make valid comparisons between different materials. Replacing SBR with natural rubber as the core ingredient transforms the product completely without loss of performance.
The fundamental shift is in the generation of harmful CO2 emissions. All manufacturing creates CO2 – that is inevitable. But rubber trees, with a functioning lifespan of up to 30 years, are extraordinarily efficient at extracting CO2 from the atmosphere (this process is know as ‘sequestration’).
This, combined with an energy efficient factory production process, makes the case for REMP rubber a product that moves with the times.
As previously noted, a study done by Suzanne Barnes from the USA, comparing the life cycle of rubber flooring with carpet, lino and vinyl, found that although rubber flooring is expensive to start with, after 15 years it ends up being much more economical. Rubber requires less maintenance and can be recycled at the end of its life.
We have voluntary product stewardship and will take back the rubber at the end of its life and recycle it. There are companies in each city that recycle rubber and rubber crumb.