8 June 2021

Public buyers swap circular procurement stories as part of Procura+

The term 'circular economy' is all around. From the European Commission’s Circular Economy Action Plan, to the European Circular Cities Declaration (CCD), governments of all levels are getting behind the circular economy as the model for a resource-efficient, low-carbon and socially responsible society. But practically speaking, what does circularity mean for procurement?

This is exactly the question that the Procura+ Circular Procurement Interest Group aims to answer, by bringing together a range of procurement and policy practitioners to share their real-life experience and discuss their upcoming plans.

At the third meeting of the Interest Group on 20 May, Tonje Nerby presented Oslo’s approach for increasing the circularity of city-owned ICT products, which along with circular requirements in tenders includes a range of capacity building, market dialogue, and monitoring activities. Valentina Schippers-Opejko also presented the City of Haarlem’s approach to procuring cough-screens for offices in response to COVID. Several discussions also took place, such as on overcoming obstacles to circular construction, getting started with circular furniture procurement, and how to set targets and monitor progress towards circular procurement. This last point in particular is a big topic of interest, hopefully to be returned to at the next meeting.

The Circular Procurement Interest Group - which is coordinated by ICLEI - Local Governments for Sustainability with support from the CityLoops project - brings together participants from the Procura+ European Sustainable Procurement Network, CCD signatories, and UN’s One Planet Network communities. Current group members are drawn from 37 public purchasers and circular procurement experts from 11 European countries, plus Canada. For more information about this and other Procura+ Interest Groups, visit us here.