Is Tile or Porcelain OK to Use?

Recently a reader and owner of a tile and porcelain business asked me whether or not their products are eco. Here’s the deal:

The U.S. Green Building Council (USGBC) ruled in 2012 that the standard for recycled content claims and documentation for LEED projects looking to achieve points for MRc4 Recycled Content aims to bring further transparency to green building through accurate recycled content reporting. 

So while it is best to check whether it is.certified, there is an effort to make tile, ceramic and porcelain eco friendly. Many eco friendly and LEED certified buildings use porcelain and tiles so its not bad! 

Here are some examples.


Did you know that you can actually install sustainable recycled tiles to create a visual masterpiece? Yes! You can use sustainable kitchen tiles in a variety of textures and colors.

It would be especially helpful to mention that you have to get rid of the natural stones and old growth timber if you really want to go eco friendly. Instead invest in cork, bamboo or plantation timber.

LEED Buildings use Stylish Tile
A newly renovated LEED certified building in NYC at 4540 Center Boulevard use tile so why can’t you?


Residences at the upscale rental property offer spacious layouts, stunning floor-to-ceiling views of the Manhattan skyline and upscale finishes, including hardwood flooring, closets with built-ins, stainless steel appliances and stylish tile backsplashes in the kitchen.

United Airlines Terminal B Houston
United incorporated energy efficiency features in the design and construction of the new Terminal B at its Houston hub.

The airline designed its United Clubs to incorporate many sustainable design elements including LED lighting, low-flow toilets and lavatories, porcelain tiling and sustainable fabrics and fixtures.


So while originally you might have thought these products weren’t green, in most cases they actually are. Ask yourself, would you use a plastic cup in a coffee house or a reused porcelain cup?  That’ll help you realize not everything is as straightforward as you might think.

Written by greenlivingguy

The Green Living Guy, Seth Leitman is a green living expert, celebrity and Editor of the McGraw-Hill, TAB Green Guru Guides. Seth is also an Author, Radio Host, Reporter, Writer and a Environmental Consultant on green living. The Green Living Guy writes about green living, green lighting, the green guru guides and more. Seth's books range from: # Build Your Own Electric Vehicle by Bob Brant and Seth Leitman (2nd and 3rd editions) # Build Your Own Plug-in Hybrid Electric Vehicle by Seth Leitman # Build Your Own Electric Motorcycle by Carl Vogel # Green Lighting by Seth Leitman, Brian Clark Howard and Bill Brinsky # Solar Power For Your Home by David Findley # Renewable Energies For Your Home by Russel Gehrke # Do-it-Yourself Home Energy Audits by David Findley # Build Your Own Small Wind Power System by Brian Clark Howard and Kevin Shea # and more green living books to follow.