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EcoProcura 2018 to collaborate with FSC

31 July 2018

EcoProcura 2018 is proud to announce that it will collaborate with the Forest Stewardship Council (FSC) on its 2018 conference on sustainable, circular and innovation procurement, which is taking place 3-5 October in Nijmegen (The Netherlands).

FSC is a global not-for-profit organisation that sets the standards for what is a responsibly managed forest, both environmentally and socially.

During the conference, the FSC will host a breakout session titled ‘The building blocks of sustainability: Procuring bio-based materials and other circular solutions for construction’, which will explore how circular innovations can be translated into technical procurement approaches. Participants will identify the links between circular procurement, bio-based solutions and more established technical solutions, and explore how the public procurement of today can contribute to tomorrow's policy and targets for buildings and infrastructure.

The FSC will also host a Market Lounge table, titled: ‘Calculating the impact of procuring timber’. The session will showcase the recently developed FSC Impact calculator, which highlights possible social costs (climate change, loss of biodiversity) of non-FSC tropical timber.

EcoProcura participants will also have the opportunity to learn more about and speak directly to FSC staff at their information stand during coffee breaks and lunches.

For more information about EcoProcura and to register, click here.

Palm oil and green public procurement

26 July 2018

The latest GPP News Alert discusses the role of sustainable palm oil in green public procurement (GPP) including current guidance and policies on the issue. With tropical forests disappearing at a rate of about 13 million hectares per year, the spotlight is also on palm oil as one potential driver of deforestation. Palm oil is used in a wide range of products from food over fuel to cosmetics and its market share has increased over the past 20 years.

Requirements addressing sustainably produced palm oil form part of the proposals for the new EU GPP Criteria for Food and Catering Services. Certification schemes for sustainable production that are based on multi-stakeholder organisations with a broad membership, such as that of RSPO (Roundtable on Sustainable Palm Oil), can be used as a mean for proof.

Earlier this year, a study was commissioned by the European Commission’s (EC) DG Environment seeking to understand the environmental, social and economic aspects (both positive and negative) of palm oil production and consumption as well as existing palm oil sustainability schemes. This study will serve to inform the EU’s work on global deforestation, including the consideration into setting up an EU Action Plan on deforestation.

To find out more about the relation of palm oil and GPP including further guidance, read the latest GPP news alert here. For more information on the EU’s action on deforestation, click here.

12 Candidates in the Running for Procura+ Awards

24 July 2018

The scene is set for the 2018 Procura+ Awards, with 12 candidates now through to the next round of selection in the run up to the EcoProcura conference in Nijmegen, the Netherlands, where the winners will be unveiled.

The 12 candidates have been selected from a strong field of two dozen entries in three contest categories: Sustainable Procurement of the Year, Innovation Procurement of the Year, and Procurement Initiative of the Year. With four nominees for each category, the scene is set for a close contest.

This year’s jury is comprised of high-level representatives with vast experience in procurement practice and policy making. Katrin Stjernfeldt Jammeh, Mayor of Malmö and Procura+ Network Chair, Janos Bertok, Head of the Public Sector Integrity Division at the OECD, and Marzena Rogalska, Acting Director of the European Commission’s DG Grow are all taking part in the judging process.

Commenting on the record number of entries for this year’s awards, Procura+ Award Jury Chair and Global Director of ICLEI’s Procurement Centre Mark Hidson said: “We were incredibly impressed by the quality of all applications this year. All of the entries reflected the great strides that public authorities across Europe are making in sustainable, circular, strategic and innovation procurement."

For more information on the 2018 awards, visit the Procura+ website.

UN High Level Political Forum: Procurement key to achieve SDGs

19 July 2018

Sustainable procurement was recognised as key to the achievement of the SDGs at the UN’s annual High Level Political Forum (HLPF), which took place this week, 9 - 18 July 2018, in New York (USA).

The HLPF is the UN’s main platform on sustainable development and plays a central role in the follow-up and review of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) at the global level. Among the SDGs addressed was SDG 12: Ensure sustainable consumption and production patterns.

During the forum, ICLEI’s Secretary General Gino Van Begin emphasized strategic public procurement’s role in achieving this goal. Van Begin pointed out that public procurement makes up 15 percent of the global Gross Domestic Product. Therefore, how to procure should underpin governments’ decisions, making them beneficial for the organisation, but also for the environment, society and the economy.

ICLEI’s work is a key driver for sustainable development through public procurement. Networks such as the Procura+ Sustainable Procurement Network and the Global Lead City Network (GLCN) on Sustainable Procurement engage over 300 cities in 50 countries.

ICLEI was represented during the Forum by local and regional leaders from across the world, among which Ashok Sridharan, Mayor of Bonn (Germany) and President of ICLEI, Procura+ Member Ada Colau, Mayor of Barcelona (Spain), and Valérie Plante, Mayor of Montreal, a GLCN member.

To learn more about the HLPF, click here. To find out more about ICLEI’s delegation at the HLPF, click here, and for ICLEI Europe’s contribution to the HLPF, click here.

EcoProcura 2018: Keynote Speakers and Market Lounge tables confirmed

17 July 2018

The EcoProcura 2018 conference on strategic, sustainable, circular and innovation procurement has confirmed its keynote speakers and over 50 Market Lounge tables. Speakers include representatives of the European Commission, mayors of leading cities, business leaders and some of the brightest inspirational thought leaders, among which Bertrand Piccard, the initiator behind Solar Impluse - the first airplane to fly around the world powered by solar energy .

The Market Lounge tables, each hosted by pioneering practitioners, are an opportunity for participants to engage in personal conversation with experts and other experienced procurers, and learn about circular procurement in practice, sustainability of supply chains, developing approaches to innovation, putting procurement policy into practice, and many more essential procurement skills.

EcoProcura 2018 marks 20 years of the conference series and is an unmissable opportunity to meet with other procurers, policy makers, businesses, researchers and international organisations.

For more information about the conference and registration, click here. A list of confirmed plenary speakers can be found here. The full programme, including breakout session speakers and Market Lounge hosts can be found here.

Public procurement in EU cities - Have your say until August 5

12 July 2018

The Innovative and Responsible Public Procurement Partnership is inviting cities, regions, individuals and organisations to provide feedback on the work they have done so far.

The Partnership focuses on three thematic areas: procurement strategy and how to manage strategic procurement, building high potential procurer-market relationships, and legal guidance in the field of innovative and sustainable procurement, for which it put forward a Draft Action Plan on tackling bottlenecks and creating opportunities. The consultation, closing on 5 August, is a unique opportunity for the public to contribute to the Draft Action Plan.

The Innovative and Responsible Public Procurement Partnership is one of 12 partnerships within the Urban Agenda for the EU – an initiative to build partnerships between Member States, cities, the European Commission and other stakeholders to stimulate growth, liveability and innovation in the cities of Europe.

For more information on the public consultation click here. More information the Urban agenda for the EU can be found here.

Committee of the Regions Opinion on EU Public Procurement Strategy

10 July 2018

In a plenary session last Thursday, the Committee of the Regions (CoR), representing regional authorities in Europe, adopted an opinion on the EU Public Procurement Strategy.

The committee supports the important role that strategic public procurement can play in addressing major challenges such as climate change, and in promoting digitalization, innovation, and social inclusion. It also noted the challenges linked to implementing the strategy on a local level, including the lack of capacity and resources in public authorities to overcome bureaucratic hurdles while harnessing the benefits of strategic public spending.

To overcome these challenges, the CoR highlighted the role of the Commission in providing further support to local procurement stakeholders and facilitating knowledge exchange on the professionalisation of public procurement practices toward effective strategic procurement.

Strategic procurement is also a focus of this year’s EcoProcura conference, 3 – 5 October in Nijmegen. High-profile presenters and panellists from the European Commission and public authorities will discuss how procurement has evolved as a tool for achieving strategic objectives, and practical sessions will also provide participants with opportunities to build capacity in strategic, sustainable, circular and innovation procurement.

To see the full statement from the CoR, please click here. For more information on EcoProcura, visit the website here.

2018 Transformative Action award deadline 31 July

5 July 2018

With less than one month left before applications close, don’t miss your chance to win €10,000 to help initiate your next sustainable and innovative procurement action with the 2018 Transformative Action Award.

Innovative and sustainable procurement actions working towards socio-economic, socio-cultural or technological transformation are particularly welcomed, especially those which showcase the use of public procurement as an instrument to accelerate the market introduction of innovative and sustainable technologies.

The award, co-organised by ICLEI – Local Governments for Sustainability, the Basque Country, and the City of Aalborg (Denmark), rewards ongoing or concluded Transformative Actions that use the 15 pathways outlined in the Basque Declaration to bring about the socio-cultural, socio-economic, and technological transformation of societies.

Current or concluded actions in the field of procurement can apply for the award by the closing date of 31 July 2018. Applicants will be shortlisted in September and the award ceremony will be held at the European Committee of the Regions, Brussels (Belgium) in November 2018.

For more information and to apply for the Transformative Action Award, visit the Sustainable Cities Platform.

 

Products-as-a-service will help transition to a circular ICT sector

3 July 2018

A new report on "The Circular Phone" has been published, highlighting legal, operational and financial solutions - including strategic procurement - which can help unlock the potential of 'product as a service' models in the ICT sector.

'Product as a service' models are a key solution to achieving more circular value chains. They offer users of ICT services the option to pay for the use of their mobile phones while producers retain ownership of the product itself, thereby encouraging the delivery of high-quality, reusable and recyclable products.

The report, published by Circle Economy and the Sustainable Finance Lab, highlights Fairphone as a market leader in circular smart phone production due to its modular and repairable design, and fair and ethical sourcing. By 'closing the loop' and offering products as a service, companies like Fairphone can further decrease their environmental impact while offering improved performance to users.

The report concludes that amongst other solutions, strategic procurement of service contracts for ICT products could help overcome barriers and support innovative new business models. It underlines the importance of purchaser – supplier engagement and collaboration to make this model a success, as well as provides a template circular service contract.

For more information on ICT as a service models read the full report here.