NEWS SEARCH RESULTS ( 1 - 8 from 8 )

Swedish government explores procurement of Health Care Electrical and Electronic Equipment

27 January 2012

The Swedish government's expert body on environmental and sustainable procurement aspects- the Swedish Environmental Management Council (SEMCo), is currently responsible for developing EU GPP criteria for Electrical and Electronic Equipment used in the health care sector (Health Care EEE) within the EU.

In order to gain a better understanding of the process and circumstances related to the procurement of Health Care EEE in the European countries, SEMCo is seeking input from key stakeholders on their experiences in this area. The four main queries are: how does public procurement of health care equipment work in your country? Who is involved in the process (doctors, procurement officers, technical expertise, etc.)? Are there framework agreements or do you procure equipment when a certain need arises? On which level is procurement undertaken - national, regional, county councils etc.?

Maria Azzopardi, project manager at SEMCo says, “We have learned that the process seems to work quite differently in the Member States, and are therefore interested in this data”. Anyone interested in participating in the project, can contact Maria Azzopardi at (+46 8 700 66 96) or Natalie Tordnell at (+46 8 5010 55 57).

For more information, click here.

New and revised GPP criteria published

25 January 2012

New EU GPP criteria for indoor lighting have just been published by the European Commission. The criteria address key environmental impacts such as, energy consumption, use of hazardous materials, packaging and use of resources in production.

Updated criteria have also been published for office IT equipment, transport, electricity, cleaning products and services, textiles, gardening products and services, hard floor-coverings and street lighting and traffic signals. Further updates for another six product groups are expected soon. Criteria are in development for taps and showerheads, toilets, heating systems, office buildings, imaging equipment and medical devices. For some groups, there is still an opportunity to contribute views.

Since 2008, the EU GPP criteria have been developed under a multi-stakeholder process based on scientific research into the life-cycle of each product and service covered and input from public authorities, industry and others. The criteria are developed in both core and comprehensive versions, allowing procurers to choose the level of environmental ambition which best meets their needs. Criteria currently exist for 19 groups.

For more information, click here.

Irish government launches first green procurement plan

23 January 2012

The Irish government has launched Ireland’s first action plan on green procurement, entitled Green Tenders, with the overall objective to assist public authorities in aiming for green public procurement (GPP). Public authorities are major consumers, spending some €14 billion annually. Ireland’s public sector has considerable leverage to stimulate the marketplace in favour of the provision of more resource-efficient, less polluting, goods, services and works.

The plan would see public authorities give priority to environmentally friendly projects and make purchases that stimulate the green market. According to the plan, "By using their purchasing power to choose, goods, services and works with a reduced environmental impact, public authorities can make an important contribution towards local, national and international sustainability goals.”

The action plan focuses on eight priority areas: Construction, Energy, Transport, Food and Catering Services, Cleaning Products and Services, Paper, Uniforms and Textiles, and ICT. The government officials behind the plan describe it as, "a major milestone, not just in effectively introducing a sustainable development mindset within public procurement practices, but also in ensuring that taxpayers’ money is spent wisely."

For more information, click here.

UK councils pledge to implement sustainable timber product procurement

20 January 2012

Councils across the UK are making a pledge to procure their forest products responsibly, as part of the World Wildlife Fund’s (WWF) What Wood You Choose? campaign. Currently more than 1.5 million cubic metres of timber imported into the UK is from illegal sources, with local authorities often neglecting to keep records of the timber products they buy. To address this, the campaign encourages local authorities to make a pledge to improve their timber purchasing.

There are three levels of pledges, bronze, silver and gold. To make a gold pledge, the council must ensure that it will only buy recycled, certified or sustainable and legal timber products across all its departments and is required to set up a recording and monitoring system to ensure forest products it procures meet the requirements of its policy.

Several councils have developed case studies to demonstrate the impressive steps they are taking. Examples include the Highland Council, which makes sure it sources only FSC-certified timber for its house-building, buys only recycled and FSC paper, and plans to use wood chip in its 20 biomass boilers and Glasgow Council, which uses locally-sourced FSC timber for the construction of its council houses.

For more information, click here.

Commission opens consultation on delivering more sustainable consumption and production

17 January 2012

On 11 January the European Commission launched a new consultation on Sustainable Consumption and Production, including GPP measures. This consultation brings into focus key questions, which will inform the direction of EU-wide policy over coming years in the several areas.

The questions relate to sustainable consumption and production and sustainable industrial policy, green public procurement, improving the environmental performance of products and improving the environmental performance of organisations. The use of Product Environmental Footprints, preventing greenwash and the development of common methodologies for life-cycle costing are amongst the specific topics covered.

Respondents can choose to complete the entire questionnaire or focus on one or more areas of interest. The background document and questionnaire are available online. The consultation runs until 3 April 2012 and contributions are invited from all interested parties.

For more information, click here.

EU Roadmap to a Resource Efficient Europe to focus on improving efficiency in product life-cycle

16 January 2012

The European Commission’s Roadmap to a Resource Efficient Europe seeks to outline how a more resource-efficient and low-carbon economy by 2020 can be achieved, with a strong focus on encouraging behavioural change among consumers. The Roadmap integrates a number of policy initiatives with the goal of transforming the existing EU market, with better efficiency throughout the life-cycle of a product a key component.

From the perspective of sustainable and efficient production and consumption, the document highlights better efficiency measures for each step of the life of a product, from design and production to marketing. The document recommends that fiscal incentives and funding should be developed in Member States to encourage businesses to improve their resource efficiency on a systemic level.

Also, the reduction of hazardous substances in products or the reuse of waste and by-products are measures proposed to reward companies that invest in innovative products. Changing consumer habits is another core element, with recommendations that adequate incentives to inform consumers on resource-efficient products through environmental information and pricing are put in place by 2020. Sustainable growth will only be reached through cooperation among public and private stakeholders to ensure coherent financing, policy, investment, innovation and research.

For more information, click here.

Calculating carbon footprints for public procurement

10 January 2012

The Finnish government has released a new report entitled, Carbon Footprint Calculators for Public Procurement, as part of an EU Life project, Julia2030. Several municipalities in the Helsinki region together with the Helsinki Region Environmental Services Authority and a number of expert organisations are involved in the project, which aims to develop calculators for different sectors in municipalities.

The report seeks to help procurers take the climate impacts of products into account and thus increase the procurement of products with relatively low climate impacts. One subproject deals with the procurement of products, and carbon footprint calculators were developed for six product groups: office and tissue paper, laptop computers, office seating solutions, incontinence products and outdoor lighting products.

These calculators are intended for use in tender calls, as attachments that the bidders must deliver together with their bid. The carbon footprint would be used as an award criterion. The tools that will be made available include the report mentioned above, calculators, instructions for each calculator, a guidebook on climatically sound public procurement and a website. There are also plans to integrate the calculators in several public procurement cases and test these tools in calls for tender in the Julia2030 partner municipalities.

For more information, click here.

Public procurement saves millions in districts in the UK

5 January 2012

Warwick District Council together with seven other local authorities in the UK has been recognised for saving £4.5million of public money in a national award for outstanding procurement performance. Councils from Bromsgrove, Malvern, North Warwickshire, Redditch, Warwick District, Worcester, Wychavon, and Wyre Forest took second place at the 2011 Society of Purchasing Officers’ award for Outstanding Achievement in Procurement.

Melanie Gillman Warwick District Council’s Procurement Manager said, “The benefits of the collaboration and the extensive expertise of the members of the group have allowed all councils to achieve more benefits in a much shorter time.” Examples of the group’s collaborative procurements include an award-winning £1.7m saving on insurance services and almost £500,000 saved on trade waste collection services. Local taxpayers in the collaborating areas have saved at least £4.5m since 2006.

The group was recognised for breaking down barriers between traditionally separate local authorities to collaborate, with regular meetings held at rotating venues seeing decades of professional expertise and experience held by the councils shared in an open and transparent forum. The group is able to better support small to medium enterprises, particularly local and start up businesses, to secure business from the public sector.

For more information, click here.