Environmental Commitment

In 1994, Interface committed to becoming the world’s first environmentally sustainable and restorative company. This ambition set us on the road to becoming the purpose-driven company we are today.

To achieve these commitments, Interface has set ambitious sustainability goals, including short term and long term carbon emissions reduction targets. Our 2030 carbon reduction goals have been approved as science based by the Science Based Targets Initiative. Interface has also set a long term target to be a carbon negative enterprise by 2040.

In the early ‘90s one of our customers asked, "What's your company doing for the environment?" When our founder, Ray Anderson, realized he didn’t have an answer to this question, he created a company task force to solve it. As he prepared a speech to the task force kick-off meeting, he read Paul Hawken’s “The Ecology of Commerce” and was deeply moved. He described the experience as an epiphany, his “spear in the chest” moment that changed his perspective on business and sustainability.

Ray Anderson was awakened to the urgent need to set a new course for Interface. He shook the foundations of the petroleum-intensive carpet manufacturing industry by declaring that Interface was committed to becoming the world’s first environmentally sustainable—and, ultimately, restorative—company.

Ray later described the Interface sustainability journey as a climb up “a mountain higher than Everest.” Mount Sustainability, as we call it, became a symbol of both the size and scope of our mission.

Learn more about Ray Anderson and our sustainability story here.

In more than twenty-five years since starting our sustainability journey, we have transformed our company and achieved aggressive goals. We have deeply reduced the environmental impacts of our business and operations, transformed our supply chain and our products, and implemented new business models.

We remain committed to achieving the aspirational goals we set when we started our sustainability journey and we continue to challenge ourselves to embrace transformational new goals. In 2016, we committed to a new mission – to reverse global warming and create a climate fit for life. Utilizing guidance under the UN’s Sustainable Development Goals and other science-based methodologies, Climate Take Back™ calls us to find ways to not only operate a net-zero business, but also to create a positive impact on the environment through our operations.

Our Climate Take Back plan includes our goals to be carbon negative by 2040 and to operate our manufacturing sites with 100% renewable energy. The flooring products we sell — including carpet tile, LVT and rubber — are carbon neutral across their full product life cycle through our third-party verified Carbon Neutral Floors™ program.

Erin Meezan“Our commitment to delivering value to multiple stakeholder groups is a foundational hallmark of our organization. We have seen the value of this commitment in our inspired and engaged culture, in our product innovation and differentiation and in our operations. As we pursue our mission focused on creating positive impacts in the world, we will continue to pioneer approaches to sustainable business and share our lessons learned with our customers, industry and the world.”

– Erin Meezan, VP and Chief Sustainability Officer

Learn more about:

Climate Take Back

Operations

All Interface carpet manufacturing facilities worldwide are certified to ISO 9001 Quality Management Systems and ISO 14001 Environmental Management Systems. We have made significant strides in reducing the environmental impacts of our manufacturing operations and we remain committed to maximizing efficiency using renewable energy and producing products with the lowest possible impact.

  Legacy Carpet Tile Operations and Multi-layered Resilient Flooring (MRF) Current Operations:
Carpet Tile,
MRF and Rubber
  2017 2018 2019 2020 2021 2019 2020 2021
Energy Use (mmBTU) - Total 441,908 502,586 418,434 348,997 391,834 619,024 531,227 582,643
Energy Use (mmBTU) in Manufacturing Operations 376,512 381,646 349,674 292,117 328,690 530,515 457,278 503,055
Energy Intensity of Manufacturing Operations (BTU / sqm of production) 9,425 8,927 8,917 10,361 10,586 11,673 13,461 13,570
Renewable Energy % in Manufacturing Operations 88 % 89 % 90 % 90 % 91 % 75 % 75 % 76 %
GHG Emissions. Scope 1 (MT CO2e) 6,622 7,423 5,384 4,197 4,783 6,782 5,383 5,923
GHG Emissions. Scope 2 Location-Based (MT CO2e) 26,318 31,619 23,623 20,183 19,845 39,820 35,310 33,839
GHG Emissions. Scope 2 Market-Based (MT CO2e) 1,895 7,707 2,444 2,435 2,588 8,332 7,673 8,178
Net GHG Emissions. Scope 1+ Scope 2 Market-Based (MT CO2e) 8,517 15,130 7,828 6,632 7,371 15,114 13,056 14,101
Net GHG Emissions Intensity per $ Revenue (kg CO2e / Net Sales USD) 0.009 0.014 0.007 0.008 0.008 0.011 0.012 0.012
Net GHG Emissions Intensity per Employee (kg CO2e / Employee) 2,674 4,945 2,581 * * 3,677 3,489 3,867
Net GHG Emissions – Scope 1+2 in Manufacturing Operations (kg CO2e) 2,647 2,594 2,176 1,778 1,754 7,961 7,075 7,374
Net GHG Emissions Intensity in Manufacturing Operations per unit of product produced (kg CO2e / sqm of production) 0.066 0.061 0.055 0.063 0.056 0.175 0.208 0.199
Cradle-to-Gate Carbon Footprint of Carpet (Avg kg CO2e per sqm from Raw Material and Manufacturing Stages) 6.7 6.1 5.2 4.8 4.8 5.2 4.8 4.8
Cradle-to-Gate Carbon Footprint of MRF (Avg kg CO2e per sqm from Raw Material and Manufacturing Stages)** 12.0 12.0 12.5 8.7 9.1 12.5 8.7 9.1
Cradle-to-Gate Carbon Footprint of Rubber (Avg kg CO2e per sqm from Raw Material and Manufacturing Stages)*** -- -- -- -- -- 10.8 9.3 8.5
Recycled Materials % in Flooring Products 58 % 54 % 53 % 58 % 59 % 46 % 48 % 50 %
Water Withdrawal in Manufactuing Operations (megaliters) 42 43 40 30 39 56 43 53
Water Withdrawal in Manufacturing Operations per unit of product (liters / sqm of production) 1.05 1.01 1.01 1.05 1.27 1.22 1.27 1.44
Water Withdrawal by Manufactuing Facility (megaliters)
- Germany -- 14
- USA 14 14
- China 8 8
- Netherlands 8 8
- Thailand 4 4
- Australia 4 4
- UK 2 2
Water Discharge in Manufactuing Operations (megaliters) 33 43
Water Discharge by Manufactuing Facility (megaliters)
- Germany -- 10
- USA 14 14
- China 4 4
- Netherlands 7 7
- Thailand 3 3
- Australia 3 3
- UK 2 2
Water Consumption in Manufactuing Operations (megaliters) 7 11
Water Consumption by Manufactuing Facility (megaliters)
- Germany -- 4
- USA 0 0
- China 4 4
- Netherlands 0 0
- Thailand 1 1
- Australia 1 1
- UK 0 0
Waste from Carpet Manufacturing Operations (MT) 5,319 6,198 5,202 4,772 6,229 5,202 4,772 6,229
Waste from Rubber Manufacturing Operations (MT)*** -- -- -- -- -- 2,561 2,362 2,478
Waste Intensity from Manufacturing Operations per unit of production (kg / sqm of production) 0.133 0.145 0.133 0.169 0.201 0.171 0.210 0.235
Waste Intensity from Manufacturing Operations per $ Revenue (kg / Net Sales USD) 0.005 0.006 0.005 0.006 0.007 0.006 0.006 0.007

Note: Greenhouse gas emissions verified by Apex according to The Greenhouse Gas Protocol: A Corporate Accounting and Reporting Standard
*Decoupled employee data is no longer available 3 years after the acquisition of nora
**Interface introduced LVT flooring to its product portfolio in 2017
***Interface acquired nora Rubber flooring in August 2018

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Interface supports the mission of the Sustainability Accounting Standards Board (SASB) disclosing material sustainability data according to SASB's industry specific standards.




Materials

Our approach to the materials we use to make our products is founded on the health of people and our planet.

A working goal for Interface and its supply chain is to have zero chemicals of concern in our products. To accomplish this Interface has several processes to assess and manage the risks and hazards associated with chemicals in our products. We evaluate materials by measuring and managing trade-offs across three lenses, including green chemistry, embodied carbon and circular economy.

We determine chemicals of concern based on a rigorous review of medical and scientific literature, regulations and market trends and adopt global goals for their substitution and phase out for all product inputs. Using this approach, Interface has phased out the use of the following material categories: ortho-phthalate esters, formaldehyde, fluorocarbons, flame retardants, fly ash, alkyl phenols, and bitumen. Determination of future materials for phase out is ongoing and is integrated into Interface’s research and development efforts. 

We are continuously assessing our current product portfolio to reduce or eliminate materials or chemicals of concern. In 2021 Interface eliminated several of these materials from our product portfolio, including fly ash and several materials in our rubber and resilient product group. In 2021, Interface also made progress to reduce virgin raw materials used in the backing of our carpet tile products and replaced them with recycled and biobased materials. To achieve this, Interface created and launched a new standard backing system which has 99% combined biobased and recycled content. Additionally, in 2021, our European business eliminated its bitumen-based backing system for carpet tiles, replacing those non-virgin petroleum derived materials with bio-based materials. 

Making products that are safe to use is only a starting point for creating sustainable and healthy products. In addition to being screened for chemicals of concern, every material used in Interface products must meet stringent requirements for contribution to product performance, carbon footprint reduction, elimination of virgin raw materials, and recyclability at the product’s end of life. Impacts on human health can occur at every stage of the product life cycle and Interface is committed to eliminating all of these.

In addition to addressing the materials within our products, we are committed to low-impact, sustainable packaging. Our flooring products are packaged in materials that are made from recycled content or can be reused and recycled after use, including recycled cardboard, wooden pallets and recyclable polyethylene foil.

At Interface, we are committed to product transparency. We voluntarily disclose product ingredients through Environmental Product Declarations (EPDs) and Health Product Declarations (HPDs). Over 90% of our products in carpet tile, resilient, and rubber are covered by EPDs. We also provide ingredient detail on our products through sustainable product certifications including Cradle to Cradle and Declare product labels. In addition, all Interface flooring and adhesives are certified to meet stringent low VOC emissions standards. You can learn about our Product Transparency and certifications here .