Home   |   About   |   The 29 best practices   |   Become a GreenStep City   |   Recognition   |   Ordinances   |  City log-in   |   Contact           Stay Connected
GreenStep City Best Practices Environmental Management

Sustainable Purchasing
no. 15

Adopt environmentally preferable purchasing policies and practices.
benefits  
  • Purchasing Impact Estimator
  • The Massachusetts EnviroCalc covers several products.
  • EPA's Recycled Content Tool.
  • Cost/benefit calculators for paper, remanufactured toner cartridges, cleaning products, electronic equipment, and Energy Star products.
  • See also EPA environmental purchasing tools, including benefits' calculators.
  • Added benefits of improved worker productivity and improved public health exist and have been documented for specific EPP products.
  • Ductile iron pipe for drinking water mains has stronger walls allowing a larger inside diameter reducing friction and thus saving energy. According to St. Cloud’s Pumping Cost Study (July 2014), the city's use of ductile iron pipe (certified under the SMaRT standard ) results in an annual savings of $210,530 compared to competing pipe, measuring power cost, pump efficiency, and head loss.
 
Step 3 recognition minimum for category A, B and C cities
All Category A, B and C cities are recognized upon completion of action 1.

Category A and B cities also complete at least one additional action for recognition.
summary
Sustainable purchasing, also known as environmentally preferable purchasing (EPP), shifts city purchasing to procurement of goods and services that have a reduced effect on the natural environment and human health when compared to competing products and services that serve the same purpose. While life-cycle assessments offer the best metric for determining what is the most sustainable, product and service attributes are commonly used as a proxy, and include:
  • Increased energy efficiency
  • Reduced toxicity
  • Beneficial to indoor air quality
  • Water-conserving
  • Recycled-content
  • Minimized waste
  • Plant-based
  • Locally produced
greenstep advisor
Johanna Kertesz, Sustainable Purchasing Specialist, MN Pollution Control Agency: 651/757-2489, johanna.kertesz@state.mn.us, http://www.pca.state.mn.us/epp
connection to state Policy

  • Cities in Minnesota are required to use paper containing a minimum of 30% post-consumer recycled content and follow a number of other environmentally preferable printing practices listed in MN Statute 16C.073 ( Environmentally Preferable Printing ).
  • The Next Generation Act of 2007 established Minnesota goals for increasing generation and use of renewable energy, one of which is purchasing 15% renewable energy by 2015.
  • Cities are able to purchase products coded with an environmentally beneficial attribute through Minnesota's Cooperative Purchasing Venture.