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Linoleum floorcoverings open the door to climate-positive designs

Mark Bauer delves into why linoleum floorcoverings are the ideal choice to help solve the dilemma of how to satisfy both sustainability and design aims, and the options available.

EVER since government set a target of reaching Net Zero by 2050, it has been a key aim of those across the construction industry to reduce carbon emissions by adopting more sustainable materials and practices. The flooring sector is no different, with many contractors looking for alternatives that can satisfy both the sustainability and design aims of their customers.

Here, I’ll delve into why linoleum floorcoverings are the ideal choice to help solve this dilemma and the options available.

Sustainability is key in the built environment and construction sector as it accounts for 38% of global carbon dioxide emissions. So, the scope for making a positive difference is significant and the desire to specify more environmentally friendly materials is strong. This is one reason why linoleum remains a key choice for those who are looking to achieve their environmental goals.

Linoleum is widely regarded as one of the most natural and sustainable floorcoverings on the market, made using renewable ingredients such as linseed oil, jute, pine rosin and wood or cork flour.

Linoleum has always been regarded as tough and durable and in recent times thanks to technological advances, like Forbo’s Topshield Pro, has evolved to meet the challenges of even the most extreme environments. These finishes are capable of meeting infection control demands, as well as withstanding tough cleaning procedures, helping to reduce the amount of cleaning chemicals used over the lifetime of a floorcovering – ensuring it lives a long service life.

Another advancement in the linoleum market, is the range of aesthetics now available, including marble, concrete or linear effects. Additionally, owing to its properties linoleum has remained a firm favourite with fitters who are looking to create unique shapes and designs onsite. The way linoleum is made ensures every square metre of material is a unique and natural decoration.

Forbo’s linoleum offering, Marmoleum, comes in over 300 colourways, spread across 12 different collections. Ranging from marbled designs to natural wood effects, and even featuring more specialist products, there’s a range of solutions for contractors to pick from.

Additionally, Marmoleum is now proven to be Climate Positive, which is backed up by a full environmental product declaration (EPD). This means that, owing to improvements and investment in Forbo’s factories, the CO2 produced in the extraction, transportation and manufacturing of the floorcovering is more than balanced out by the removal of CO2 during the growth process of its natural materials.

This makes the weighted average of the Marmoleum product range Climate Positive from cradle-to-gate without the need for offsetting – providing a carbon saving for every square metre it’s used in.
Mark Bauer is environmental specialist from Forbo Flooring Systems

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