City Purchasing and Contracting Services
Green Purchasing Overview
Roles and Responsibilities
The Green Purchasing Program (GPP) is a cooperative effort among City Departments, hosted by City Purchasing for the Department of Finance and Administrative Services (FAS). Staff from Seattle Public Utilities, Seattle Parks Departments, Seattle Department of Transportation, and other City agencies also join. These representatives serve as the “Purchasing Green Team.”
City Purchasing and the Purchasing Green Team strategize, promote and implement the City’s commitment to promoting environmental stewardship and reducing greenhouse gas emissions when buying goods, materials, services, and capital improvements.
The GPP has two central objectives: to provide guidance to City departments, and to be a model for local citizens, businesses and other governmental agencies.
Guidance to City Departments
The Green Purchasing Program provides prioritized focus and resources to City departments for product and service acquisitions, and centralized controls that encourage and assure compliance. This objective is aggressively directed through the Climate Action Plan, Mayor’s Executive Orders, City ordinances and resolutions, City wide procurement policies and acquisition procedures, resources and standards. In addition, City Purchasing contracts include boilerplate language that:
In selection of bids or proposals, the City often requires bidders to describe the environmental benefits that their product offers. The City will often score and evaluate such responses as part of vendor selection. The City has included environmental scoring for such products as computer hardware, cleaning chemicals, paint, copier equipment, and paper products.
The Green Team sponsors quarterly workshops for City staff and other regional businesses and public agencies on topics, such as FSC lumber contracts, toxin reduction in LEED facility maintenance, biodiesel fuels and lubricants, recycled paper, and paper waste reduction.
The City has retained a policy to share contracts with other local governmental agencies, to allow our GPP initiatives and products to be shared and distributed beyond the City. These include such products as 100%-recycled content paper; EPEAT Silver standard Desktop Computers; copier equipment, FSC Certified lumber, slag cement, remanufactured laser cartridges, and green janitorial products, deconstruction and salvage contracts that “recycle” buildings instead of demolishing buildings.
Model for Citizens and Businesses
The City GPP program also works to serve as a model for citizens, households, other government agencies, small businesses as well as large corporations that are local or from around the country. This purpose was highlighted in the Mayor’s Green Ribbon Commission on Greenhouse Gases, which led to the commitments and action items in the Climate Action Plan and Climate Action Now. As a model to citizens and other government or business agents, the City GPP program will often seek products or services that are: