The U.S. Department of Energy purchases products with the most environmental attributes possible, especially those attributes designated for purchase by Congress:
There are many benefits associated with sustainable acquisitions including:
Energy Security Benefits
- Reduce U.S. reliance on imported petroleum by purchasing energy/fuel efficient products, products whose manufacture uses less energy (recycled content), and products with low-to-no petroleum basis (made from readily renewable resources such as biobased materials)
- Increase the economics of biorefineries by co-producing valuable biobased products along with biobased fuel
- Establish healthier environment for staff (by eliminating products that off gas, such as cleaning products, flooring, paint)
- Reduce hazardous materials on site
- Reduce atmospheric carbon dioxide that causes global climate change
- Often reduce initial purchasing cost (recycled paint, remanufactured toner cartridges, retread tires, etc.)
- Reduce disposal and cleanup costs
- Improve economics of U.S. agricultural production (biobased products)
- Stimulate economic development in rural areas (wind farm power, biomass production)
To help Federal agencies identify the designated products pertaining to each service/purchasing area, the General Services Administration (GSA) developed the Green Products Compilation (GPC). This tool lists the green products for which the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), DOE, or the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) have issued designations or otherwise provided guidance for environmental or energy attributes. The GPC is a publicly available, web-based resource that allows users to identify applicable environmental programs, such as Energy Star and WaterSense, by product type and category. It serves as a centralized resource that supports compliance with Federal green purchasing requirements and the achievement of agency sustainable acquisition goals. This web-based tool:
- Features a refined search function including the ability to search by keyword or browse by product category;
- provides summaries of the environmental programs (i.e., the green purchasing program components) and easy to understand instructions;
- links to EPA, DOE, USDA environmental program websites;
- distinguishes between mandatory purchasing programs and others that support the achievement of agency sustainable acquisition goals (e.g. EPA Design for the Environment Program);
- identifies applicable Federal Acquisition Regulation (FAR) requirements;
- identifies and links to potential purchasing options, including GSA Multiple Award Schedules, GSA Global Supply, AbilityOne, and UNICOR; and
- is regularly updated with the latest changes in green product designations.
- The Greening Government Procurement Working Group developed "Guidelines for Identifying Contracts Susceptible to Executive Order 13514ís 95% Sustainable Acquisition Goal" to assist personnel in identifying acquisitions that should be considered appropriate to apply toward attainment of the Executive Order 13514 sustainable acquisition goal. The goal is to ensure that 95 percent of new contract actions are for sustainable products and services where such products and services can meet the agency performance requirements. For more information please contact Mr. Richard Langston at firstname.lastname@example.org.
To facilitate the transition to more environmental products, the Sustainable Acquisition website offers information on Executive order and legislative sustainable purchasing requirements, availability of products, education tools, success stories, and a host of other related topics to help users identify the required products that meet performance, regulatory and cost specifications.
DOE Sustainable Acquisition Working Group
The DOE Sustainable Acquisition Working Group sponsors bimonthly conference calls, special trainings, technical support, and site-specific assistance on energy efficient and environmentally safe procurement. Founded a decade ago and chaired by the HSS Office of Sustainability Support, the Working Group has more than four hundred DOE Federal and contractor members.
To join the Sustainable Acquisition Working Group, contact DOE Sustainable Acquisition Coordinators Jeff Eagan (email@example.com) or Shab Fardanesh (firstname.lastname@example.org). For inquiries about particular sustainable products, contact Sandra Cannon (email@example.com).