NEWS SEARCH RESULTS ( 1 - 8 from 8 )

China gathers GPP knowledge and know-how at EcoProcura

28 November 2014

Beijing (China) was host to 60 participants at the ICLEI-organised event EcoProcura China 2014 – International Symposium on Municipal Green Procurement. The two day event saw an exciting exchange of experiences, best practice and information on green public procurement (GPP) between national and local governments from Asia and Europe, including China, Japan, Korea, Malaysia, the Netherlands and Switzerland. Experts, officials and solution providers all attended the event.

“Compared with developed countries in the West, China has started GPP late but our progress has been remarkable. The Chinese government is keen to learn from overseas experience to enrich the content of our GPP policies,” said Ying Wang, Director of the Procurement Management Office of China’s Ministry of Finance. Qi Zhai, Deputy Secretary General of the China Business Council for Sustainable Development, a partner of ICLEI in organising EcoProcura China 2014, said that as the largest consumer in the country, the Chinese government has a clear and crucial role in leading GPP.

This is the first time a Chinese city has hosted an EcoProcura event. Earlier this year ICLEI and the City of Ghent (Belgium) hosted 350 participants at the Europe-wide EcoProcura 2014 conference. “Through our cities network, we hope that by exchanging knowledge and practices, comparing progresses and setting up benchmarks, we can accelerate efforts and ambitions in global sustainability,” said Konrad Otto-Zimmermann, Founding Director of ICLEI and Chair of ICLEI’s Urban Agendas.

For more information, visit the ICLEI East Asia website.

Mainz wins Local Climate Protection Award

26 November 2014

The City of Mainz (Germany) has been presented with the Local Climate Protection Award for its comprehensive climate-friendly procurement policy. The City of Mainz’s commitment to green public procurement (GPP) covers all aspects of urban life from the purchase of printers and copiers, to the upgrading of street lights and new building construction. The city also offers its employees the use of bicycles and low-emission vehicles, demonstrating the ability to cut CO2 emissions while saving money.

Minister for Economic Affairs, Climate Protection, Energy and Regional Planning Eveline Lemke said: "By energy and resource-efficient procurement in the public sector, significant cost savings and CO2 reductions can be made. The city of Mainz has already shown, with the support of urban bodies and city institutions, a great commitment to achieve these goals. We see here how communities can use their market power to develop and popularise energy-saving techniques."

The Local Climate Protection Award has been presented to outstanding German municipalities and regions since 2009 as part of the National Climate Initiative, a joint undertaking with the German Institute for Urbanism. The award recognises exemplary climate protection projects and this year received 117 applications across three categories.

For more information, visit the Citizen’s Environment Portal website [in German].

PROBIS calls for members to join Buyers Group

19 November 2014

The Procuring Building Innovative Solutions (PROBIS) project, which aims to increase the energy efficiency and sustainability of European public buildings, is calling for public authorities and and companies to get involved. PROBIS is seeking members to join the project Buyers Group, and to potentially participate in project activities.

Led by Environment Park in Turin (Italy), the project is supported by ICLEI with targeted dissemination and networking activities linked to the Public Procurement of Innovation (PPI) Platform. Four PPI tenders will be launched within the project in three different European Union Member States. The tenders will focus on building innovative solutions in the following areas: envelope components (ENV); energy generation and distribution systems (EGD); and energy management systems (EMS). The selected solutions will be implemented and tested inside four pilot buildings in Miskolc (Hungary), Torino (Italy), Borlänge (Sweden) and the Lombardy Region (Italy). Different building typologies will be covered, including office buildings and social housing of different ages, to provide scope for replication of solutions at EU level.

Members of the Buyers Group will receive periodic updates of the project’s progress, have the opportunity to visit a PROBIS pilot project, and be involved in shaping the legal framework for PPI. Importantly, members are invited to attend dedicated technical seminars and dissemination events, and join the discussions on sustainable construction and shaping the project outcomes.

For more information, visit the PROBIS project website, and to join the Buyers Group contact

Providing hands-on support for public purchasing organisations in Green Public Procurement

18 November 2014

PRIMES is a new Intelligent Energy Europe-funded project working across six countries in Europe: Denmark, Sweden, Latvia, Croatia, France and Italy. It seeks to help municipalities overcome barriers in the green public procurement (GPP) process. As many small and medium sized municipalities lack knowledge in this area, PRIMES aims to demonstrate how even the smallest purchasing organisations, by sharing and co-operating, or by working with regional energy agencies, cluster organisations or regional authorities, can achieve GPP.

Employing a 'learning by doing' process, task forces of experts will work with purchasing organisations on specific contracts to draw up tender specifications and evaluation criteria which will deliver better outcomes, such as more energy efficient products and services. The task forces will also provide expert advice on specific product groups, legal issues, and life-cycle costing. The overall aim is to build capacity and political will in similar small and medium sized purchasing organisations across Europe, creating a follow-on effect of GPP good practices, and encouraging mainstreaming of GPP into all public sector tenders.

Expert partner ICLEI will provide a package of GPP capacity building material for the task forces to deliver to their purchasing organisations. The trainings will be provided to several organisations at the same time, giving participants the chance to share knowledge and experience, while achieving a fundamental understanding of the environmental and economic benefits of GPP.

For more information, visit the PRIMES website.

Invitation issued to host Procura+ Seminar 2015

13 November 2014

ICLEI is inviting interested parties to host the 2015 edition of the Procura+ seminar series. This exciting opportunity will present a host partner – whether city, municipality, organisation or government – with access to leading experts in sustainable public procurement and the chance to help build an engaging, diverse seminar which responds to their needs and interests.

The 2015 installment of the Procura+ seminar will see ICLEI's Procura+ Campaign combine forces with the GPP 2020 project to provide a platform for exchange. Purchasers from all levels of government, suppliers, manufacturers, policy-makers and multipliers on specific topics related to sustainable public procurement will come together to identify strategies for mainstreaming low-carbon and innovation procurement in European public authorities.

Cities interested in hosting the event are asked to provide a venue and additional logistics, along with their individual know-how and experience to help define the direction of the seminar. A contribution to cover staff costs, travel and accommodation for speakers, materials and other support logistics is also requested. The amount, in terms of financial and in-kind donations, can be discussed with the Procura+ team.

For more information, download the call for hosts.

Call for contributions: Procurers to influence textile labour conditions

11 November 2014

Fair Wear Foundation, the independent, non-profit organisation that works with companies to improve labour conditions for textile workers, is currently seeking input from procurement officers for their new WellMade apparel research project. Procurers are asked to complete an online survey to assist in the formation of free sessions that will be conducted at a wide range of trade fairs and events across Europe. The sessions are designed to assist European clothing companies in recognising and overcoming major labour issues, and achieving better working conditions. Parallel to the sessions is a growing collection of online resources, tools and case studies that can be accessed via the WellMade website.

Launched in July 2013, Wellmade is a three year educational programme aimed at European textile manufacturing companies. As brands develop Corporate Social Responsibility departments, and adapt Codes of Conduct, many still face challenges in making sustainable improvements to working conditions in their supply chains. With these thoughts in mind, an additional section of the WellMade project, focusing on procurement professionals and their role in influencing labour conditions, has been developed.

The Fair Wear Foundation consists of 80 member companies, represents over 120 brands, and is located in seven European countries. Member products are sold in over 20,000 retail outlets in more than 80 countries around the world.

To take part, access the online survey.

Role of sustainable and innovative public procurement captured in Cities Today

5 November 2014

The importance and potential of procurement of innovation and sustainable procurement is outlined in the latest edition of Cities Today magazine, in an article written by Mark Hidson, Deputy Regional Director and Global Director of the Sustainable Procurement Capacity Centre at ICLEI. The article emphasises the need to move away from the mindset that lowest-price represents the lowest cost in the long run, and introduces the key factors of procuring innovation.

“The total value of public procurement in the EU is estimated at €2 trillion per year - or about 19 percent of European GDP,” writes Mr. Hidson. “Directed in the right way this figure represents tremendous fiscal power to shape societies for the better. Channelling this sum towards exclusively sustainable, ethical and innovative products and services will have a hugely significant impact on job creation and environmental and social welfare.”

The role of the revised Public Procurement Directives in fostering procurement of innovation and sustainable procurement is touched on, as is the work of ICLEI in promoting sustainable public procurement. "Undertaken correctly, sustainable procurement has the capacity to stimulate new technology, achieve more efficient public services, create jobs and provide solutions that reduce environmental impacts and are socially responsible," Mr. Hidson writes.

To read the article, visit the Cities Today web-edition.

Public procurement can play major role in promoting sustainable forestry, states paper

4 November 2014

Through leading by example and advocating best practices, governments can help decrease the levels of illegal logging while promoting sustainable forestry, according to the paper Promoting Legal and Sustainable Timber: Using Public Procurement Policy, produced by Chatham House. The paper examines governments’ efforts to use public procurement policy to promote the use of legal and sustainable timber.

At present, at least 26 countries, mostly in the European Union (EU), have outlined a timber procurement policy at central government level. The continued proliferation of the EU Green Procurement Policy programme, and the growing number of pledges by private companies to ensure their supply chains are sustainable, demonstrates an expanding global commitment to the procurement of sustainable timber.

The paper outlines evidence that suggests these timber procurement policies are having a broader impact on consumer markets. The paper also concludes that timber procurement can provide valuable lessons to governments for developing other sustainable procurement policies, specifically in relation to palm oil, a major force behind deforestation.

For more information, and to download the report, visit the SPRC resource centre.