Research and Publications   >>   NASPO Green Purchasing Guide
NASPO Green Purchasing Guide
Section 1:  Introduction

Buying and using environmentally preferable products (EPPs) has become an integral part of public procurement in recent years because it has become clear that this practice benefits the environment, improves efficiency and, often saves money. For those new to the arena, implementing a green purchasing program is not always simple. Such efforts may be characterized by administrative hurdles, technical barriers and skepticism from purchasers and product end users.

As a result, NASPO has developed this Green Purchasing Guide for its members and others to use in navigating the sea of information surrounding the adoption of a responsible purchasing program. This guide is intended to be a straight forward, easy-to-use document that provides purchasers with a basic understanding of the concept and benefits of green purchasing, offers recommended steps and proven strategies to enable the implementation of a green purchasing program, and supplies links to other resources offering detailed information on specific elements of the process.

The Guide is also being designed to reflect ongoing changes in the marketplace for the various EPPs and services. As a result, the goal is to incorporate dynamic elements into its design so that segments can be updated as new technologies, environmental stands and general information become available. However, purchasers should be aware that these dynamic aspects may not be available until updates to the guide are made.

In the meantime, procurement officials are encouraged to review and offer comments when desired on the information currently available in the Guide and take advantage of some more detailed information and educational opportunities offered by the organizations referenced throughout.

Section 2:  Understanding The Basics

  •      What is green purchasing?
  •      Why is it important to buy green?
  •      Who are the key participants?
  •      What are the challenges?

Section 3:  NASPO Policy Statement

Section 4:  Drafting Your Green Purchasing Policy

  •     Considerations for drafting your policy statement
  •     Putting pen and policy to paper

Section 5:  Steps to Developing a Green Purchasing Program

  •   Ten steps to Starting a Program
  •   Plucking the low-hanging fruit
  •   Assessing your current purchases

Section 6:  Implementation Strategies to Garner More Green

  •   Statutory Requirements
  •   Educate v. Mandate
  •   Best value v. lowest price
  •   Set-asides and price preferences
  •   Solution-based contract “categories"

Section 7:  Easing The Burden Of Buying Green

  • Contracting Opportunities (within individual and multi-state contracts)
  • Verifying Green Claims
  • Understanding environmental standards

Section 8:  Training and Information Sharing

  • Opportunities for Collaboration
  • Case Studies/Current Green Purchasing Initiatives
  • Comparing costs and ways to keep them down
  • Guidance on Total Cost of Ownership and e-waste

Section 9:  Measuring and Marketing Your Success

  • Purpose
  • Four Easy Steps
  • Calculating Benefits
  • Sample Calculator 

Section 10:  Resources

  • Links
  • Sampling of State and Local Government Programs
  • Selected Books
  • Additional Information
  • News and Updates - Green Product Specifications (NEW!)

Section 11:  Glossary of Terms

Section 12:  Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)