Latest News

5 February 2018

Auckland invests in electric vehicles

Auckland Transport, a Controlled Organisation (CCO) of Auckland Council (New Zealand) responsible for all of the region’s transport services, has invested 1.2 Million NZD $ into electric vehicles, making it the single largest electric vehicle purchase as part of the Government procurement programme.

The move saw Auckland Transport (AT) add 20 Electric Vehicles (EVs) to its fleet and increase its charging infrastructure across the city.

Speaking about the initiative, Auckland Mayor Phil Goff, said: “It sends a clear signal that our city is serious about reducing emissions and protecting our environment. Climate change is a defining issue of our time and setting ambitious zero-emission targets is the only way we will make a serious impact on reducing our carbon emissions.”

Auckland Transport Chief Financial Officer, Richard Morris, added: “[This] enables AT to start its journey towards a zero emission fleet.”

Transport is Auckland’s largest source of CO2 emissions and main capital and operational spend. This recent investment in Electric Vehicles follows on from previous achievements the city has had with the procurement of electric trains and the electrification of the entire rail network.

Auckland has also committed to procuring only e-buses by 2025, with two new e-buses soon to come into force.

For more information about Auckland’s procurement plans, visit their Sustainable Procurement Profile.

29 January 2018

Socially Responsible Procurement Action Plan launched by Rotterdam

Rotterdam has released a Socially Responsible Procurement Action Plan. The plan, approved in December 2017 by the Executive Board, describes the way in which the city puts into action the agreements from the Socially Responsible Procurement Manifesto, a scheme developed by PIANOo, on behalf of the Dutch Ministry of Infrastructure and Water Management. The starting point is the effective and efficient use of the purchasing function for social policy objectives, such as employment and a clean environment.

When companies receive an order, Rotterdam sets social conditions, so that jobs, traineeships and apprenticeships become available to people with a disadvantage in the labour market. Environmental aspects also form part of the commitments. Since 2008, contractors have to meet environmental requirements for the use of trucks and construction machinery. Construction materials such as PVC pipes should be fully recycled and all wood comes from sustainably managed forests. Rotterdam is also Fairtrade municipality and most recently has started to recycle coffee waste so the nutrients can be used in plant fertiliser. The new action plan will integrate different types of sustainable procurement goals, including circularity, zero emission logistics and energy performance.

Rotterdam aims to use the action plan to further embed responsible procurement and help bring all tenders to the desired level. The action plan describes how the cooperation between contract owners, buyers and policy advisers can work best and indicates how Rotterdam sets the conditions for successfully embedding socially responsible aspects in purchasing processes. Rotterdam, one of the founding cities of the Global Lead City Network on Sustainable Procurement, also hopes the action plan will cement its position as a forerunner in the field of social procurement and make the municipality’s ambitions visible to the outside world.

13 December 2017

Cape Town drafts a new Green Procurement Action Plan

The City of Cape Town has drafted a Green Procurement Action Plan with the aim of supporting and sustaining green industries and solutions in the city. The plan, which will appear before council for deliberation in 2018, will include the setting of targets for green procurement in various sectors.

“Government, including municipalities, has enormous purchasing power. By leveraging our spending power, we can do a lot to encourage suppliers and service providers to use environmentally responsible production solutions in their day-to-day business,” says Johan van der Merwe, the City’s Mayoral Committee Member for Finance.

The City recently also adopted a Climate Change Policy, which states that it will “consider the life-cycle cost of goods and services in City supply chain management processes, thereby promoting the use of climate-appropriate resources, technologies and approaches and stimulating the market for these products and services, with a focus on local supply where available”.

Cape Town was a founding participant of the Global Lead City Network on Sustainable Procurement and recently presented its plans at the GLCN on SP High Level Event at COP 23.

11 November 2017

3rd High Level Event of the GLCN on SP at the COP 23

Mayors, Deputy Mayors and other political representatives from the cities of Auckland, Budapest, Cape Town, Denver, Ghent, Oslo, Seoul and Tshwane were speaking at the 3rd annual High Level Assembly of the Global Lead City Network on Sustainable Procurement. At the event, taking place on 11 November 2017 at COP23 in Bonn, the cities presented their sustainable procurement commitments and achievements, and shared their knowledge and experience. In leading by example, participants of the Network aim to accelerate the implementation of sustainable purchasing worldwide.

Park Won Soon, Mayor of Seoul Metropolitan Government and chair of the GLCN on SP said: “Leaders of cities around the world convened in Seoul in April 2015 and agreed to launch a network of cities committed to 100 percent sustainable procurement. Much progress has been made since then and our interactions today will be the foundation on which we strive for a better, brighter, and more sustainable future.”

Raymond Johansen, Governing Mayor of Oslo, explained how the capital of Norway is addressing climate change through the city’s new procurement strategy. He said: “By launching our new Procurement Strategy, the City of Oslo wants to ensure that our spending contributes to more sustainable economies and societies. As part of the Global Lead City Network on Sustainable Procurement, we want to influence other cities in doing the same.”

Solly Msimanga, Executive Mayor of Tshwane, announced that 40% of the city’s bus fleet will be green by 2020. Tine Heyse, Vice Mayor of Ghent, stressed the city’s commitment to an annual increase of 10% in contracts awarded to the social economy sector.

Johannes van der Merwe, Councillor of the City of Cape Town, explained the city’s Green Economy Strategy, including a target for 20% renewable energy in city buildings by 2020. Penny Hulse, Councillor of Auckland, outlined the city achievements, which include the procurement of a new underground rail link that involves zero waste and low emission construction and is creating job and training opportunities in the city.

Jerry Tinianow, Chief Sustainability Officer of Denver, said that by 2020, 25% of food purchases will originate from the State of Colorado and Péter Szegvári, Chief Advisor of the Mayor of Budapest, confirmed that 100% of the city’s procurement processes will integrate sustainability and green aspects by 2020.

With a unified voice, they highlighted the power of local authorities to increase sustainable procurement activities in order to improve their citizens’ lives and achieve other social, economic and environmental benefits.

3 November 2017

3rd High Level Event to take place at the COP23

Participants of the Global Lead City Network on Sustainable Procurement will come together in Bonn in November for the network’s 3rd High Level Event, at the COP23. The event will be held in the Cities & Regions Pavilion in the afternoon of 11 November (from 12.00 until 14.00). During the summit, high level city representatives will showcase the sustainable procurement activities and commitments which the participating cities have introduced, and the power these can have in addressing climate change.

Chair of the Network Mayor Park Won Soon of Seoul Metropolitan Government (Korea) will be joined at the event by political representatives including Governing Mayor Johansen of Oslo (Norway), Executive Mayor Msimanga of Tshwane (South Africa), and Mayor Bautista of Quezon City (Philippines). Deputy Mayor Sinnemäki of Helsinki (Finland), Vice Mayor Heyse of Ghent (Belgium), Councillor van der Merwe of Cape Town, and Councillor Hulse of Auckland (New Zealand) will also take the stage. The cities of Denver (United States) and Budapest (Hungary) will be represented by high level advisors. It will serve as an inspirational session for other Mayors and cities attending the COP23 to consider the power of sustainable procurement.

The Global Lead City Network on Sustainable Procurement is an initiative launched by Seoul Metropolitan Government in partnership with ICLEI, with the support of the United Nations Environment Programme and the Korea Environmental Industry and Technology Institute.

Cities and Regions Pavilion – UNFCCC Bonn Zone

The Cities and Regions Pavilion is located in the UNFCCC Bonn Zone. The City of Bonn and the Federal State of North Rhine-Westphalia are co-hosts of local and regional engagement at COP23 in Bonn. ICLEI – Local Governments for Sustainability is the organizing partner, acting on behalf of the Global Task Force of Local and Regional Governments. To check the program, click here.

18 October 2017

Procura+ Awards 2017 winners announced

Projects involving recycled textiles, eco-labelled school buildings and remanufactured furniture emerged as Europe's most sustainable and innovative public procurements at the 2017 Procura+ Awards held on 17 October in Tallinn (Estonia) as part of the eafip Conference on Innovation Procurement. The conference is held in the context of Estonia's Presidency of the EU. The winning public procurers were:

Municipality of Hyvinkää, Finland
Sustainable Procurement of the Year was awarded to the first Nordic Swan eco-labelled pre-school in Finland, which was constructed after a market dialogue process and included sustainability measures on energy use, chemical products, building products and health factors.

Ministry of Defence of the Netherlands
Innovation Procurement of the Year was awarded for two contracts supplying towels, cloths and overalls to Dutch military personnel. This produced estimated savings of 233 million litres of water and 69,000 kg of CO2, based on a technical requirement of textiles containing at least 10% recycled post-consumer textile fibres.

Public Health Wales (National Health Service, UK)
Tender Procedure of the Year was awarded for the use of a supplier open day and contracting social enterprises, Public Health Wales was supplied with over 2,500 furniture items of which only 6% were new purchases. This diverted 41 tonnes of waste from landfill with a CO2 saving of 134 tonnes, creating full time jobs for seven disabled and long term unemployed people.

For more information about the finalists and winners, visit the Procura+ website.

29 June 2017

Deadline extended for 2017 Procura+ Awards

ICLEI has extended the deadline for applications to the 2017 Procura+ Awards until 18 July 2017 for the Sustainable Procurement, Innovation Procurement and Tender Procedure of the Year categories. The competition rewards sustainable and innovative public procurements leading to significant improvements of public good, services, process and infrastructure.

The 2016 edition of the Procura+ Awards saw the City of Copenhagen (Denmark), Transport for London (UK) and Rijkswaterstaat (Netherlands) win awards for Sustainable Procurement of the Year, Innovation Procurement of the Year and Tender Procedure of the Year, respectively.

The 2017 Procura+ Awards ceremony will be held at the Third Major eafip Event on Innovation Procurement in Tallinn, Estonia on 17 October. Winners will be featured in a variety of ICLEI publications and web platforms, and at the next EcoProcura conference.

For more information and to download an application form, visit the Procura+ website

16 June 2017

ICLEI Europe hosts Korean GPP delegation

ICLEI's European Secretariat hosted a delegation of Korean public sector and development organisations on 14 June to explore Green Public Procurement in policy and practice in European cities and regions. The delegation, organised by the Korean Environmental Industry and Technology Institute (KEITI), included representatives from Korean ministries, research institutes, city development corporations and several national agencies for tourism and shipping.

The visit focused on various aspects of sustainable public procurement, including GPP target setting, implementation strategies, monitoring mechanisms and the scope and definition of green product and service categories addressed by European GPP criteria. Mark Hidson, Global Director of ICLEI's Sustainable Procurement Centre, presented ICLEI's background in sustainable and innovation procurement and exemplified current GPP projects, platforms and initiatives on the European and global levels involving cities and local governments.

ICLEI and KEITI are partners in the Global Lead City Network on Sustainable Procurement, involving 14 cities acting as ambassadors for sustainable procurement to lead to a resource efficient, low carbon and socially responsible society. They also cooperate with UNEP on the 10 Year Framework Programme for Sustainable Consumption and Production.

For more information, visit the ICLEI Sustainable Economy and Procurement and KEITI websites.

9 May 2017

The City of Buenos Aires issues its Sustainable Procurement Profile

The Government of the Autonomous City of Buenos Aires has been working on the inclusion of sustainability criteria in public procurement processes since 2012. Amongst their achievements, having trained in sustainable procurement more than 400 purchasers within the Goods and Services Purchasing and Procurement System, having developed three SPP Recommendations Guides, and leading SPP processes both in Argentina and in the region.

Buenos Aires is already purchasing different products introducing sustainable criteria. When buying materials and electronic devices, the City aims at reducing energy consumption and to encourage the use of renewable energies. Requirements such as durability and waste management are considered when acquiring computer equipment. Buenos Aires adopted an electronic government management model in order to reduce the amount of paper used. For the printing paper that needs to be purchased, it is required that it derives from sugar cane making process or that it has specific certificates.

The City sets up new challenges for the future with the goal of stimulating the demand for more sustainable goods, services and businesses, by performing a role in the validation of suppliers that increasingly taking sustainable criteria into account.

To read the Sustainable Procurement Profile, visit here

10 April 2017

Auckland's City Rail link, a good practice of sustainable procurement

Expected to be finished by 2024, Auckland’s City Rail Link (CRL) is the largest infrastructure project in the City and will cater for 30,000 passengers per hour at peak times on trains that will run every 10 minutes. In Auckland, transport is responsible for about 40% of GHG emissions – the majority from road transport. By offering commuters a new possibility, Auckland will reduce its footprint and will help New Zealand to meet its international commitments on climate change.

The CRL is a good example of sustainable procurement, as sustainability underpins the whole project from conception to construction. It is the first public transport project in New Zealand to measure carbon emissions associated with its construction and operation. It also aspires to achieve zero waste to landfill. The project also has a social component, by focusing on skills legacy, apprenticeships and new jobs for the unemployed.

Key sustainability initiatives planned for the street tunnels over the project lifetime include the use of LED street-lighting, installing tree pits in the street to collect and filter stormwater runoff, and switching from diesel generators to grid electricity during construction. Furthermore, sustainability is embedded into the management systems.

24 March 2017

Letter from Pekka Sauri, Deputy Mayor of Helsinki, one the GLCN on SP founding participants

Cities around the world have a crucial role in the transition to sustainable consumption and production by using sustainable public procurement (SPP) as a key tool. By introducing sustainable criteria in our purchases, local and regional governments are making our societies more sustainable, while at the same time ensuring social justice and fair treatment, and generating economic benefits.

2016 marked 20 years of work on sustainable procurement for ICLEI. Figures speak for themselves: during these two decades over 2,000 people have been trained; 300 cities in more than 50 countries have been supported; and 1 million tonnes of CO2 have been saved through the involvement in 150 projects, 100 conferences, seminars and workshops.

The City of Helsinki, as the Chair of the Procura+ European Sustainable Procurement Network and a founding participant of the Global Lead City Network on Sustainable Procurement, is championing SPP to accelerate its implementation worldwide. In these networks, we are sharing experiences, learning from others, and engaging with all stakeholders, including suppliers we buy from. Every single purchasing choice we make has an impact on our cities and on our citizens, so we want our decisions to be as smart as possible to foster resource efficient and low-carbon societies.

In Helsinki we have committed to achieve 100% sustainable public procurement in 2020. The goal for this year is 70%. To achieve these goals, all city departments and subsidiaries are being trained to make sustainable procurements.

Sustainable procurement is about considering what is really needed from a holistic perspective – so as to explore possibilities such as reusing products or leasing them – and deciding whether we need to buy or contract certain products or services. Then, it is about introducing sustainable criteria in the tenders.

By promoting SPP, local and regional authorities are also contributing to the Sustainable Development Goal #12: ensure sustainable consumption and production patterns. SPP also plays an important part in reducing GHG emissions, boosting green jobs and encouraging suppliers to promote fair employment.

I would like to encourage all colleagues to embrace sustainable procurement practices to achieve social, economic and environmental value for the money cities are spending.

Pekka Sauri

Deputy Mayor, City of Helsinki, Finland, member of ICLEI’s European Regional Executive Committee, and Procura+ Network Chair

This letter originally featured in CityTalk, a blog produced by ICLEI, on 9 March 2017.

16 January 2017

Auckland replaced 12,500 lights with LEDs in 2016

The City of Auckland has issued its sustainable procurement profile that is now downloadable both from the Publications page and the city webpage. It highlights that by the end of 2016, 12,500 streetlights were replaced with LEDs, achieving a saving of 72% on energy consumption. This is part of Auckland’s LED replacement programme, with a commitment to replace over 44,000 high pressure sodium streetlights with LEDs by 2018, a good example of sustainable procurement.

Other sectors in which the City is purchasing sustainably are transport, waste, and energy and buildings. Amongst its future plans, the trial of e-buses, a wider EV/hybrid fleet replacement, and additional electric vehicle charge points.

Auckland, that joined the GLCN on SP in 2015, has been active in sustainable procurement for several years. Some of its sustainable public procurement achievements are the ISO 14001 training with suppliers that the City carried out, and the retrofitting of the city building achieving 82% waste to landfill diversion, 39% emerge savings and social benefits.

Visit Auckland’s page to download its SP Profile.

13 January 2017

Free innovation procurement assistance offered to European procurers

The eafip initiative is offering 12 public procurers from EU Member States interested in improving their innovation procurement activities (both pre-commercial procurement and public procurement of innovation) the chance to gain targeted assistance. Selected procurers will be guided through the start-up and implementation of an innovation procurement process, including legal assistance.

Procurers will be selected on the basis of four criteria: concrete interest and commitment to starting a PCP or PPI project, the potential impact of the procurement, geographical balance of the cases across EU Member States, and level of experience in the implementation of innovation procurement projects. To take part, applicants must complete an online questionnaire.

The deadline for applications is 14 February 2017. The EU-funded eafip initiative aims to promote innovation procurement and provide assistance to public procurers to help them carry out the procurement of innovative ICT based solutions. The project runs from 2015 - 2017.

For more information and to apply, visit the eafip website.

16 November 2016

Procura+ Manual Launched

The 3rd Edition of the Procura+ Manual was launched at the Procura+ Seminar in Rome on 13 and 14 October 2016. This fully updated and revised edition of the Procura+ Manual aims to position sustainable procurement in the current economic, political and legal framework. As with previous editions, it acts as a central point of reference for public authorities and others wishing to understand and implement sustainable procurement.

The manual includes practical advice on how to integrate sustainability into procurement and a model for systematically implementing sustainable procurement – the Procura+ Management Cycle. The manual also explores the possibilities for sustainable and innovation procurement set out within the 2014 Directives, together with how they can be applied in practice.

Key guidance is provided on sustainable procurement approaches for six high-priority product groups – construction, IT equipment, cleaning products, food, vehicles and electricity. Links and references throughout the text showcase good practice examples from around Europe, including many from participants of the Procura+ Network, more detailed information on the product groups covered and a variety of further implementation tools.

The Procura+ Manual is published by ICLEI – Local Governments for Sustainability and produced as part of the SPP Regions project.

For more information, download the Procura+ Manual.

2 September 2016

Second GLCN on SP Mayoral Summit: sustainable procurement helping the Paris Agreement fulfill its promise

Political representatives from the cities in the Global Lead City Network on Sustainable Procurement (GLCN on SP) gathered this Friday for the Network’s Mayoral Second Annual Summit in Seoul. Representatives used the occasion to present their key achievements on sustainable public procurement and to announce their targets as GLCN cities. Seoul Metropolitan Government, Chair of the GLCN on SP, chose to include the Second Summit as part of the Mayors Forum on Climate Change to show the importance of sustainable procurement to combat climate change and to showcase the activities of the Network participants in attendance – Seoul, Auckland, Budapest, Cape Town, Helsinki, Montréal, Quezon City, and Warsaw.

The purpose of the Mayors Forum on Climate Change was to outline how cities and local governments can support national and global efforts to raise the level of global ambition, to ensure a rapid entry into force of the Paris Agreement. In that sense, cities in the GLCN on SP are prepared to step up to the challenge of using procurement to address climate change and help ensure that the Paris Agreement lives up to its promise.

"The cities need to open a sustainable future and continue to move forward based on the commitments that have been made today. This way the cities can tackle climate change through procurement," Park Won-soon, Mayor of Seoul Metropolitan Government and Chair of the GLCN on SP, said.

Seoul Metropolitan Government highlighted that in 2015, as a result of their mandatory requirement to purchase green products, procurement of sustainable products by the authority exceeded 50%. Len Brown, Mayor of Auckland, explained two major projects the city is involved in: a new metro rail which should help the city achieve 23% energy savings, and the replacement of 43,000 street lights with LED bulbs which will save NZ$36 million over 20 years.

Joy Belmonte, Deputy Mayor of the City of Quezon, detailed how the City’s Green Public Procurement Team, created in 2012, has been purchasing eco-labeled products and promoting the use of environmental friendly products. Johannes van der Merwe, Councillor of Cape Town Metropolitan Council, explained how the city has fully integrated energy efficiency requirements into IT procurement and used greener technologies for roads’ projects. The South African city now plans to finalize and adopt the Sustainable Procurement Action Plan as part of the City’s Green Economy Strategy and Action Plan.

Montréal, one of the latest cities to join the GLCN on SP, announced quantifiable targets for the electrification of the city fleet. Roger Lachance, Director of the Department of Environment of the City of Montréal, presented the plans: between this year and 2020 the City will convert 30% of the Société de transport de Montréal bus fleet to hybrid engines, and 230 municipal vehicles to 100% electric power in order to electrify and optimize the city’s transport system. Montréal will also increase the sustainability of its building stock in order to reach its target of reducing greenhouse gas emissions by 80% by 2050.

Perttu Pohjonen, Special Envoy for the Deputy Mayor of Helsinki, explained how the city’s environmental network for procurement has reinforced the cooperation and information exchange needed for Helsinki to reach its 100% SPP target by 2020. Peter Szegvari , Senior Advisor to the Lord Mayor of the Capital City of Budapest, introduced some of the SPP initiatives underway in the capital of Hungary. These include the inauguration of a public bicycle-sharing system to reduce GHG emissions and the use of green criteria in the procurement process for the lighting of the Liberty Bridge, which resulted in the purchase of more than 500 LED light bulbs.

Marta Kęsik, Inspector of the Department of Strategy and Development of the City of Warsaw, announced plans to invest in the city’s public transportation and district heating. By 2020, the capital of Poland aims to bring 130 electric buses into operation and connect 229 social buildings to district heating. Improved energy efficiency in buildings is another key target, with guidelines for the proposed criteria to improve energy efficiency in buildings currently being developed.

8 August 2016

Buenos Aires, the latest city to join the GLCN on SP

The Global Lead City Network on Sustainable Procurement has welcomed a new city as part of the initiative: Buenos Aires, the capital of Argentina. With this new incorporation, a total of 14 cities are now part of the GLCN on SP, championing sustainable procurement globally, and setting ambitious and quantified targets on SPP that can serve as inspiration for other local and regional governments.

The Autonomous City of Buenos Aires is the largest and most populated city in Argentina. Its conurbation population is about 13 million people. The city has over 1050 green spaces.

In 2010, the Environmental Protection Agency of Buenos Aires, together with ICLEI, issued a manual on sustainable public procurement, including information about the concept, its history, its relevance, possible barriers and obstacles, and the benefits it entails. During the last years, local authorities have focused on the sustainable management of packaging, as well as in the responsible consumption and purchasing of paper. Energy efficiency has been another important topic. Buenos Aires has a leadership in the region in the operational implementation of sustainable practices in public procurement.

To learn more about SPP in Buenos Aires, read this interview (in Spanish)

29 July 2016

The 2nd Annual Summit of the GLCN on SP to take place within the Seoul Mayors Forum on Climate Change

Participants of the Global Lead City Network on Sustainable Procurement will convene in Seoul, South Korea, to hold their 2nd Annual Summit. The gathering will take place within the Seoul Mayors Forum on Climate Change (1-2 September 2016), which will focus on two key developments: the Compact of Mayors and its relevance to the Paris Agreement, and the New Urban Agenda to be adopted at Habitat III.

The GLCN on SP Summit will demonstrate how sustainable public procurement is a key tool for local and regional governments to achieve environmental, economic and social benefits. It will serve as an inspirational session for other Mayors and cities attending the Forum to consider the power of sustainable procurement. The GLCN cities will present their SP commitments and actions, and encourage others to replicate strategies and policies. The inclusion of the GLCN on SP Summit within the Forum showcases the positive impact of sustainable procurement in achieving the 17 Sustainable Developments Goals (SDGs) , including aims such as sustainable cities and communities, and sustainable consumption and production.

The Forum is organized by Seoul Metropolitan Government, chair of the GLCN on SP, in collaboration with ICLEI. The attendance to the Forum is by invitation only.

For more information on the Seoul Mayors Forum on Climate Change, click here

27 July 2016

Rotterdam joins sustainable tropical timber initiative

The European Sustainable Tropical Timber Coalition (STTC) saw its membership increase during its recent conference in Rotterdam (The Netherlands), with the host city, one of the GLCN on SP cities, ending the conference by joining. ‘We aim to be the world’s most sustainable port city and we see joining the STTC as integral to that,’ said Leon Dijk, Sustainable Procurement specialist with Rotterdam City Council. Almost 100 people from across the STTC membership took part in the conference. European Timber Trade Federation Secretary General Andre de Boer told participants that there are early signs that efforts to strengthen the sustainable tropical timber market are paying off, but warned that more needs to be done to make the concept mainstream. He finished by urging companies and organisations to join the STTC.

The STTC recently launched a €2 million funding campaign to help local authorities and businesses to implement sustainable timber procurement policies. The Netherlands has been particularly active in promoting sustainable tropical timber, backing the STTC and implementing a procurement system that has seen a rise in sustainable timber market share from 13.4 percent to 74 percent. The so-called ‘Green Deal’ between the public and private sectors aims to boost sustainable timber’s market share further.

In addition to plenary sessions, the conference featured lively workshops that looked at designing sustainable procurement policies and financial instruments for driving sustainable timber markets. By stimulating demand for sustainable tropical timber, European authorities can prevent deforestation and provide a livelihood for millions of people in developing countries.

For more information on joining the STTC, contact mark.vanbenthem@probos.nl.

15 July 2016

Montreal joins the Global Lead City Network on Sustainable Procurement

The city of Montreal, Canada, has signed the commitment to join the Global Lead City Network on Sustainable Procurement, a group of 13 cities engaged to drive a transition to sustainable consumption and production by implementing sustainable and innovation procurement.

Montréal has already in place a Community Sustainable Development Plan, with the objectives of reducing greenhouse gas emissions, improving air quality, keeping families in the city, consuming less water, improving the quality of runoff water, recovering the waste, making the city a leader in green economy, increasing the number of environmental certifications, improving its green infrastructures and showing solidarity, demonstrating equity and handling succession planning.

Furthermore, the STM (Société de Transport de Montréal) released its sustainable procurement tools to the public domain. The public corporation aims to have 90% of its contracts include sustainable development criteria by 2020. In 2014, the STM consolidated its sustainable procurement approach by publishing guidelines and two handbooks to facilitate the application.

Visit here to learn more about the Community Sustainable Development Plan of Montreal.

7 June 2016

Denver and Rotterdam meet to discuss sustainable procurement strategies

Representatives of the cities of Denver, United States, and Rotterdam, The Netherlands, have met to discuss how the two city governments implement their sustainable procurement activities. Both cities are part of the Global Lead City Network on Sustainable Procurement, pushing to drive a transition to sustainable consumption and production by purchasing sustainably.

Denver is rewriting its executive order regarding procurement this year, and the City is looking into other cities’ policies and plans to exchange ideas and shape its procurement actions. As Denver and Rotterdam have similar populations, Jerry Tinianow, Chief Sustainability Officer of the City of Denver, and Léon Dijk, Coordinator of Sustainable Public Procurement of the City of Rotterdam, have shared experiences to compare how both cities organise their procurement and introduce sustainable criteria. Tinianow and Dijk also looked at strategies for assessment of needs, an approach that encourages procurement practitioners to first consider if the most sustainable solution might be to buy nothing at all.

One of the main differences identified between both cities is that Rotterdam has a larger procurement budget due to the fact that the European city includes procurement for the schools, whereas in Denver, as in most other cities in the US, the school system is not under the control of the municipal government.

Denver and Rotterdam have just finalised their Sustainable Procurement Profiles, including information about their policies, strategies, achievements and challenges. These documents are aimed at showcasing how the GLCN on SP cities are championing sustainable procurement.

For more information visit here

30 May 2016

'Small actions = Big changes', article by Mayor Park

Park Won Soon, Mayor of Seoul and chair of the GLCN on SP, has published an article in the UNEP publication, Our Planet, outlining the transformative actions the city is taking to address climate change and improve air quality.

Mayor Park highlights the need to “move away from standardized urbanization and planning that aims for modernization and industrialization through destruction and construction” and calls for a new urbanization that is sustainable and has the foundation for energy self-reliance. “Seoul,” he states, “is on the road to such a new organization”.

Some of the measures taken so far are explained in the article, such as the increase of the supply of electric and hydrogen fuel cell vehicles and the expansion of the charging infrastructure. Seoul has also implemented low-pollution vehicle projects, such as installing emission-reduction devices on outdated diesel vehicles.

Mayor Park concludes the article by emphasizing the relevance of cities acting together to reach beyond the national borders.

To read the full article, visit here.

23 May 2016

Ghent honoured for its sustainable procurement policies

The Association of Flemish Cities and Municipalities (VVSG), supported by the Flemish Government, awarded this January prizes to cities that consciously implement a sustainable procurement policy.

Ghent, participant of the GLCN on SP network was honoured for a painting contract. Ghent installed a small contest to decide on the right framework contract for the sustainable painting the city plans to carry out. On the one hand, this contest ensured less administrative expenses and, on the other hand, it guaranteed the use of low-impact products through the inclusion of particular environmental criteria in the technical specifications.

The city of Roeselare was declared “Laureaat Duurzame Overheidsopdracht” (Laureate Sustainable Public Contract) by the VVSG thanks to their long-term commitment to a sustainable fleet management through some thirty tenders. Roeselare also received the durable award in the form of a pack of cradle to cradle products that have been specifically designed to be safe and reusable from start to finish.

Three other cities were honoured for their sustainable framework contracts: Courtrai, for the periodical testing of their ecological fire extinguishing equipment; Antwerp, for the procurement of eco-friendly paper hygiene products, and Sint-Niklaas, for their use of low-impact materials to make toys for the St Nicholas celebrations.

To learn more, visit here

10 March 2016

Budapest and the City of Tshwane join the Global Lead City Network on Sustainable Procurement

The Global Lead City Network on Sustainable Procurement has welcomed two new participants: Budapest (Hungary) and the City of Tshwane (South Africa). By signing the GLCN on SP Commitments’ Document, both cities have expressed their will to take an exemplary role globally in the implementation of sustainable public procurement, to act as global and regional champions of SPP, and to collaborate with other cities in the Network to exchange experiences and knowledge.

Budapest, the capital and the largest city of Hungary, has shown a deep interest in procuring sustainably and is already implementing strategies to improve energy efficiency and reduce CO2 emissions. The City of Tshwane, the administrative capital of South Africa, with a population of around 2,9 million people, is using green procurement as an innovative way of financing green economy projects.

By joining the GLCN on SP, Budapest and the City of Tshwane commit themselves to set specific, clear and measurable targets on sustainable procurement. The other ten cities in the Network – Seoul (Republic of Korea)- Chair of the Network –, Auckland (New Zealand), Cape Town (South Africa), Denver (United States), Ghent (Belgium). Helsinki (Finland), Oslo (Norway), Rotterdam (The Netherlands), Quezon City (Philippines) and Warsaw (Poland) are currently working on establishing their targets as well.

10 February 2016

The City of Cape Town to procure electric buses

The City of Cape Town will issue a tender for the procurement of electric buses for the MyCiTi service, in line with their commitment to lowering carbon emissions.

Since the inception of MyCiTi service in May 2010, approximately 38.5 million passenger journeys have been recorded on it to date.

“As we extend the footprint of the MyCiTi service across the city, we also have a responsibility to lower our carbon emissions and the impact of pollution on the urban environment,” says Mayor Patrice De Lille. “Cities across the world will soon reach a point where alternative fuel for public transport is no longer a choice but a prerequisite, and as such the City of Cape Town has decided to expand our current fleet of diesel buses with electric ones.”

A tender for the procurement of a fleet of 12-metre electric buses is due to be advertised by the beginning of February 2016. The City is also considering electric double-decker buses for longer distance trips as they have more seating. The tender specifies that the electric buses should be able to travel at least 250 km in traffic before the batteries need recharging. Apart from the buses, the successful bidder must also provide the City with the charging stations for the buses and the necessary training for the bus drivers and mechanical engineers.

“If all goes according to plan, Transport for Cape Town will be the first municipality in the country to benefit from the latest alternative fuel technology and we will be the first city in Africa to use electric buses for public transport,” states Mayor De Lille.

7 December 2015

"Procuring sustainably, leading globally" - 1st Annual Summit

Participants in the Global Lead City Network on Sustainable Procurement (GLCN on SP) came together on Saturday 5 December at the COP21 to celebrate their first annual Summit in the Cities & Regions Pavilion – TAP2015. Auckland, Cape Town, Denver, Ghent, Helsinki, Oslo, Quezon City, Rotterdam, Seoul and Warsaw are all participants of this Network, which is a joint initiative of Seoul Metropolitan Government and ICLEI – Local Governments for Sustainability.

Park Won Soon, Mayor of Seoul Metropolitan Government, was elected chair of the GLCN on SP during the session. “Today is the starting point for more cities around the world to make similar pledges. Let us strive to establish and spread green consumption and production systems around the world,” Mayor Park said.

On the occasion of their first Summit, the ten cities presented their sustainable procurement activities and achievements, and shared their knowledge and experience. In leading by example, participants of the Network aim to accelerate the implementation of sustainable purchasing worldwide.

Jin Sun Park, Director, Climate Change and Sustainable Division of the Seoul Metropolitan Government referred to the mandatory sustainable procurement policy the city has in place and how they use their own purchasing power to create a green consumption culture. Pekka Sauri, Deputy Mayor of Helsinki, confirmed that the capital of Finland will achieve 100% sustainable public procurement by 2020. Pex Langenberg, Deputy Mayor of Rotterdam, announced the city’s commitment to 100% sustainable procurement from 2015 onwards.

Len Brown, Mayor of Auckland, explained that over 40,000 streetlights are being replaced by LEDs, saving NZ$36 million over 20 years. Johannes van der Merwe, Councillor of the City of Cape Town, mentioned several initiatives already underway, such as the introduction of sustainable criteria in city fleet vehicles tenders. Leszek Drogosz, Director of Infrastructure of the City of Warsaw, explained that Warsaw is also focusing on sustainable procurement of transport, with 300 trams purchased in the last two years and plans for 100 electric buses in the next four years. Lan Marie Nguyen Berg, Vice Mayor for Environment and Transport of the City of Oslo, emphasized “SPP is an essential tool to reach Oslo’s goal of fossil free by 2030.”

“UNEP is delighted to have the GLCN on SP working on sustainable procurement. We are excited to see the lead action we are all looking for,” said Ligia Noronha, Director, Division of Technology Industry and Economics, UNEP.

Before the end of 2016, all ten cities will share their commitments within the GLCN on SP, to continue championing sustainable public procurement and public procurement of innovation to make their societies resource efficient, low carbon and socially responsible.

24 November 2015

1st Summit to take place at the COP21

Participants of the Global Lead City Network on Sustainable Procurement will come together in Paris in December to celebrate their first Summit, at the COP21. The event will be held in ICLEI's Cities and Regions Pavilion – TAP 2015 in the afternoon of 5 December (from 16.00 until 17.15). During the summit, cities in the network will outline how they intend to fulfill their commitments and will exchange experience and knowledge.

Auckland (New Zealand), Denver (United States), Oslo (Norway), Quezon City (Philippines) and Warsaw (Poland) are the latest participants to join the Global Lead City Network on Sustainable Procurement, a joint initiative of Seoul Metropolitan Government and ICLEI to promote sustainable public procurement (SPP) and related environmental, societal and financial benefits. Korea Environmental Industry and Technology Institute (KEITI) has welcomed the initiative and is looking forward to its integration in the 10YFP on SPP Programme. The Network was launched in April 2015 with Seoul (Republic of Korea), Cape Town (South Africa), Helsinki (Finland), Ghent (Belgium) and Rotterdam (The Netherlands) as founding participants.

“These global SPP ambassadors are joining efforts to raise awareness on the benefits of sustainable public procurement and public procurement of innovation, as well as combating climate change with their activities,” states Gino Van Begin, ICLEI Secretary General. “Network members show their commitment to improve the quality of life for their citizens, reduce greenhouse gas emissions, foster new markets, create new job opportunities and save money for their administrations.”

Cities and Regions Pavilion – TAP 2015

The Cities and Regions Pavilion – TAP 2015 is located in the Climate Generations Area, at the COP21 Paris – Le Bourget. The Pavilion signals an important constant: local and regional actors hold tremendous potential to act quickly and concretely whether or not the world achieves an international agreement.

To check the program, click here

2 September 2015

Five new cities join the Network

Auckland (New Zealand), Denver (United States), Oslo (Norway), Quezon (Philippines) and Warsaw (Poland) have joined the Global Lead City Network on Sustainable Procurement, to promote SPP and related environmental, societal and financial benefits. The Network was launched in April 2015 with Seoul (Republic of Korea), Cape Town (South Africa), Helsinki (Finland), Ghent (Belgium) and Rotterdam (The Netherlands) as founding participants.

The Global Lead City Network's goal is to lead a transition towards sustainable production and consumption. Procurement makes up a significant proportion of public expenditure. According to the United Nations Office for Project Services (UNOPS), an average of 15 percent of global gross domestic product (GDP) is spent through public procurement systems each year, amounting to over $10 trillion. By introducing sustainability criteria in their purchases, public authorities can use procurement as a mechanism for the transition to a resource efficient, low-carbon and socially responsible world.

Key pillars of the network are target setting, implementation and monitoring of measures. To this end the city participants will both set quantified commitments on SPP and report annually on their progress. This ability to quantify achievements will provide convincing evidence to others of the impact more sustainable procurement practices can have.

20 April 2015

Global Lead City Network on Sustainable Procurement launched

Seoul Metropolitan Government and ICLEI have joined forces to establish a Global Lead City Network on Sustainable Procurement. The aim is to create a worldwide network of leading cities that share and develop their capabilities to implement sustainable and innovation procurement, driving a transition to sustainable production and consumption. The network was launched at the ICLEI World Congress in Seoul (Republic of Korea) on 11 April 2015.

Seoul (Republic of Korea), Cape Town (South Africa), Helsinki (Finland), Ghent (Belgium) and Rotterdam (The Netherlands) are the founding participants. They commit to take an exemplary role globally by putting SPP into action through setting ambitious, quantified targets for its implementation, developing a clear implementation strategy and undertaking an evaluation of performance. The cities will act as global and regional champions of SPP, committing to promote and accelerate its wide-scale adoption by other cities.

Recent examples of such leadership include pledges by ICLEI member Helsinki (Finland) to achieve 100 percent sustainable public procurement by 2020 and a public call for action launched by the French capital Paris in the run-up to the COP21 summit. Cities are uniquely placed to develop and showcase practical solutions, which can then be replicated and adapted to other urban environments.

The network marks a recent growth in international interest and understanding of the importance of procurement in the fight against climate change. It has been set up to raise awareness of the benefits of sustainable and innovation procurement, and to help develop a supportive political framework.



To find out more about the Global Lead City Network on Sustainable Procurement, contact:

ICLEI's Sustainable Procurement Centre
c/o ICLEI European Secretariat
Mr. Mark Hidson

Leopoldring 3
79098 Freiburg

Telephone: +49 (0) 761 – 368 92 0
E-mail: mark.hidson@iclei.org


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