Sacramento, Calif. -- California Department of Resources Recycling and Recovery (CalRecycle) Director Scott Smithline conditionally approved the most recent Five-Year Plan submitted by Carpet America Recovery Effort (CARE). CARE has 60 days to submit a revised Plan that meets revision conditions.

Conditions, to be completed by Sept. 1, 2019, for Plan approval include: conducting an independent, detailed economic analysis; providing an additional level of transparency regarding CARE's economic analysis, including goals consistent with the results of CARE's convenient collection study; establishing minimum weight of post-consumer carpet content that a product must contain; and developing and implementing Agreed Upon Procedures for carpet reuse.

The Plan's conditional approval means that CARE will continue as the carpet stewardship organization for California until further notice, and will work to meet the goals of legislation (AB 2398 and AB 1158) to reduce the amount of carpet going to landfill and to create a market for recycled carpet material. The approval also immediately releases grant funding for California-based recyclers.

"This is great news," said Robert Peoples, CARE executive director. "Plan approval means we can continue to support the carpet recycling industry in California in order to keep more carpet out of landfill, create jobs and promote more products made with recycled carpet. We look forward to continuing subsidies to carpet recyclers, providing convenient carpet collection sites across the state, and educating retailers, installers, local government and consumers on the process and benefits of recycling. We will continue to work closely with CalRecycle to ensure that their conditions are met and that we meet or exceed the 24% carpet recycling rate goal by January 1, 2020."

Recovered carpet can be used to manufacture new carpet fiber, building and construction materials, and products for the consumer and automotive industries, among other uses. The California Carpet Stewardship Program is funded by an assessment on all carpet sold in California. That assessment amount increases to $0.35 per square yard on January 1, 2019, up from the current $0.25 per square yard. CARE's California program provides subsidies and grants to recyclers to support collection, equipment and product testing, along with extensive installer and retailer outreach and consumer and local government education efforts.

"Getting Plan approval, even conditional approval, was arduous, but we know that CalRecycle's feedback and continued cooperation helped this Plan meet the needs of the state and for the industry," Peoples added. "We were further assisted by the California Carpet Stewardship Advisory Council, and the new Advisory Committee, groups of stakeholders that provided invaluable guidance."

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