In a move aimed at increasing the company's overall recycling capacity, Shaw Industries announced it has signed an agreement with DSM Chemicals North America to purchase complete ownership of Evergreen Nylon Recycling LLC, a nylon recycling plant in Augusta, Ga. Shuttered in 2001, Evergreen was previously owned jointly by Honeywell and DSM. Shaw assumed Honeywell's part ownership of the plant through its recent acquisition of Honeywell's fiber division.

Shaw noted that gaining ownership of the Evergreen plant will allow Shaw to bring the facility back into operation. The plant uses patented technology to convert nylon carpet into caprolactam, the raw material used to make Type 6 nylon found in residential and commercial carpets. Shaw plans to use the Evergreen plant to recycle post-consumer carpets for reuse, "without the loss of any aesthetic or performance properties," Shaw said.

Vance Bell, Shaw's executive vp of operations, said that the Evergreen plant, once upgraded, will be able to collect as much as "300 million pounds of carpet waste of all types annually."

"We've been building our Evergreen project teams, and they are already working on technical issues and actively building the collection network to supply the plant," he said. "Evergreen will be part of a system of efficient post-consumer carpet collection, recycling, and value recovery on a large scale."