ANDERSON, SC -- Tile Council of North America (TCNA) recently announced that the 2020 North American industry-wide Environmental Product Declaration (EPD) for ceramic tile has been certified by Underwriter’s Laboratories (UL) and published to UL’s publicly accessible database.

This EPD, valid for the next five years, updates the previous North American industry-wide EPD for ceramic tile, which expired at the end of 2019. Effective immediately, products covered by the EPD can be used to satisfy architectural and green building specification criteria, including those established by LEED v4.1.

Over 85% of North American ceramic tiles are covered by the EPD and specifically those from the following companies: American Wonder Porcelain, Arto Brick, Crossville, Inc., Dal-Tile Corporation, Del Conca USA Inc., Florida Tile, Interceramic USA, Ironrock, Porcelanite-Lamosa, Portobello America, Quarry Tile Co., StonePeak Ceramics Inc., and Vitromex USA, Inc.

Simply stated, this industry-wide EPD is a report of the environmental footprint of the North American ceramic tile industry. The environmental impacts reported by the EPD are significantly lower than those reported by EPDs for flooring comprised of plastic based materials, such as luxury vinyl tiles and planks. In particular, a direct comparison to publicly available UL-Certified industry-wide EPDs for vinyl tile and rigid core board reveals the following:

  • Vinyl tile’s 75-year global warming potential and fossil fuel resource depletion are two and three times higher, respectively, than ceramic tile.
  • Rigid core board’s 75-year global warming potential and fossil fuel resource depletion are three and five times higher, respectively, than ceramic tile.

“Global warming potential and fossil fuel depletion throughout the full lifecycle of a product are key metrics in characterizing carbon footprint,” said Bill Griese, TCNA’s director of standards development and sustainability initiatives. “Not only does the North American industry-wide EPD for ceramic tile evidence a generally low carbon footprint, it also shows ceramic tile to have the lowest overall impacts in photochemical oxidant creation (smog), ozone depletion, acidification and eutrophication potential when compared to publicly available EPDs for competitive flooring materials. Ceramic tile is the proven green choice for the good of the environment.”

For more information, refer to the EPD Guide for North American Ceramic Tile or the Guide to EPDs in the 2020 Tile the Natural Choice publication.