Wool News: PFASs in synthetic carpets further boosts sustainability of wool
Awareness of the potential health and environmental hazards associated with some chemicals used in commercial interiors is growing, further reinforcing the arguments for designers, manufacturers, and consumers to shift towards natural raw materials, such as wool.
Synthetic carpets may typically include a group of chemicals called perfluorinated or polyfluorinated alkyl substances, more commonly known as PFASs. While these are valued for their stain-repellent qualities, they are also known as ‘forever chemicals’ because they may never fully degrade in the environment. In some literature PFASs have been negatively associated with potential health problems in people.
Since the 1940s these ‘forever chemicals’ have been used in a wide range of products including carpets and furniture, as well as camping gear and non-stick cookware. They are now found in the air and water around the globe, as well as in the bodies of nearly everyone on earth.
As consumers and manufacturers become better educated regarding the possible negative characteristics of PFASs, we are likely to see a move away from synthetic carpets, and back towards wool.