Priority Sectors

The GLCN uses public procurement as a tool to tackle climate change globally. To create the most impact, the network activities and commitments focus on the four priority sectors that leverage most potential for e.g. emission reduction.

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On a global scale, buildings use around 40 per cent of resources, 25 per cent of water and 40 per cent of energy, and they account for around one third of greenhouse gas emissions (UNEP & Resource Panel, 2017). Using the power of green public procurement, cities can steer the solutions on lowering energy use and cutting emissions. This can be achieved by including criteria for renewable energy to be used throughout a buildings lifecycle, to include recycled or remanufactured materials, or by increasing energy efficiency. GLCN Cities set high targets in this priority sector for example:

- by 2020 reduce total energy use in its buildings  by  5%, to completely  phase out the use of fuel oil as  an  energy  source  and  to double the number of green roofs from 11 to 22. 

Rotterdam - by 2030, 40% reduction in energy consumption in municipal buildings.

Renewable energy and energy efficiency can, in combination, provide over 90% of the necessary energy-related CO2 emission reductions to meet the decarbonisation and climate mitigation goals set out in the Paris Agreement (IRENA, 2018). Cities can leverage public procurement to contribute to this global transition by phasing out fossil fuels and including criteria for renewables only or by preserving embodied energy. GLCN Cities set high targets in this priority sector for example:

Buenos Aires
- By 2025, 20% of the energy used by large users of the public sector of the city will come from renewable sources.

Ghent - doubling the share of locally produced renewable energy from 7.5% in 2011 to 15% of household energy demand in 2019.



Food systems contribute between 19-29% of total GHG emissions, with livestock supply chains account for 7.1 GT CO2,equivalent to 14.5% of global anthropogenic greenhouse gas emissions. Cattle (beef, milk) are responsible for about two-thirds of that total (FAO, 2017). About a third of all food produced is lost in the food supply chain, with only 66.6% of food supply getting to the consumer (FAO, 2013). Green public procurement can make a significant contribution towards lowering those GHG emissions by for example supporting regional, organic food systems, plant-rich and seasonal diets in catering contracts. Some GLCN cities committed to this approach:

- By 2020, 25% of food purchases will originate from the State of Colorado.

Oslo - The City Council made a decision to increase the share of organic food in the city’s procurements to 50%. 

The transport sector produced 20% of direct CO2 emissions in 2014 (Worldbank). Almost all (95%) of the world's transportation energy comes from petroleum-based fuels, largely gasoline and diesel. urban transport accounting for about 40% of end-use energy consumption (IPCC, 2014).There are various opportunities to apply sustainable public procurement in support of a low emission transport sector. For instance, public authorities purchase technology to increase efficiency of the public transport system, or award contracts to service providers only if contributing to low carbon mobility. In addition to emission reduction, there are other benefits coming with a sustainable transport sector such as cleaner air, noise reduction, public safety or lower congestion levels. GLCN cities lead the way by committing to specific targets such as:

- By 2020, 70% of the newly purchased public transportation vehicles in Budapest will be clean.

Warsaw - By 2020, 130 electric buses will be in operation.





ICLEI - Local Governments for Sustainability
Mr. Philipp Tepper

Leopoldring 3
79098 Freiburg

Telephone: +49 (0) 761 – 368 92 0


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