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15 January 2019

Binhai wins Chinese Public Procurement Award

Tianjin Binhai New District won the 2018 China Government Procurement Award for innovation in green procurement. The Award recognizes their green furniture procurement evaluation system, which helps to assess and weigh environmental performance of bidding products on a large scale with full life cycle perspective.

In 2017, the Binhai Government Procurement Center pledged to advance green public procurement (GPP) by establishing a local green evaluation system. To this end, the Binhai Government Procurement Center joined the 10YFP SPP Working Group 1A “GPP Implementation and Impact Monitoring” as one of the East Asian pilot local governments - along with Suwon (Korea), Guiyang, Shenzhen Guangming District, Urumqi Economic and Technological Development Zone, and Tianjin Jizhou District (China).

Under the project, ICLEI East Asia worked closely with the Binhai Government Procurement Center and domestic partners, and identified the furniture sector as the entry point to pilot the green procurement evaluation scheme. ICLEI East Asia helped formulate a set of specifications, award criteria, and verification methods covering phases of raw materials extraction, design, manufacturing, assembling, transport, and end of life treatment. In June 2018, the Binhai Government Procurement Center applied the criteria to two tenders of procuring 6,160 sets of school desks and chairs for public campuses. From 2019 onwards, the district of Binhai is looking into issuing a local document to accelerate the adoption throughout the district.

 

14 January 2019

Become Part of the Team: Vacancy at ICLEI

The Sustainable Economy and Procurement team at ICLEI is looking to fill the position of Officer Sustainable Economy and Procurement at its European Secretariat in Freiburg (Germany).

ICLEI Sustainable Economy and Procurement team has been working on the topic of sustainable, strategic and innovation procurement for 22 years. In more recent years the team are also working on the topic of financing and sustainable local economies. The team support public authorities in implementation activities, spreading awareness of the concepts, developing new approaches, capacity building and encouraging policy developments at the European and international level.

This role has a topical focus on financing sustainable urban development and infrastructure. The new officer will be involved in the identification and delivery of a range of European projects. Working language is English and deadline for applications is January 19. The description of the position and information on how to apply can be found on the ICLEI jobs page.

ICLEI – Local Governments for Sustainability is an association of 1,200 local governments in 68 countries that are dedicated to sustainable development.

We are looking forward to your applications!

 

8 January 2019

What is next for Sustainable and Innovation Procurement?

The new year of 2019 brings new projects and new opportunities for Sustainable Public Procurement (SPP).

The circular economy is a key topic dominating the sustainability debate for years now. Public procurement has an important role to play in the transition toward more circularity. Ambitious local authorities are taking on the challenge to make their procurement more circular and 2019 will see the first results of their endeavours. To learn more about what communities are doing to implement a more circular economy check out the projects CircularPP as well as UrbanWINS  - and more projects coming up soon.

Social procurement goes beyond fair contracts for service providers. Ethical and fair trade needs to be assured along the entire supply chain. Implementing and monitoring fair supply chains and creating a commitment from all stakeholders is an important task for 2019. The Make ICT Fair project leads the way by involving local authorities in creating fair trade along the ICT supply chain.

More and more public authorities are seizing the opportunity to spark innovation through public tenders. Innovative products and services are the results of these. And cooperation among the public bodies is essential – it allows to implement good practices at a large scale and sends a powerful sign to the market for more innovation. Procure2Innovate and InnoBroker are two projects that show how Europe-wide cooperation among purchasing bodies can lead to innovation.

Sustainable and innovation procurement stretch beyond European borders. ICLEI offices globally have been working hard to support SPP and 2019 has promising global cooperation on the horizon. The Global Lead City Network on Sustainable Procurement – a network among leading cities in SPP - is developing a new and ambitious programme for the coming period.

The  Procura+ Awards 2019 reward outstanding sustainable and innovation procurement initiatives. Apply now and let your colleagues know about this opportunity.

For the New Year of 2019, we wish you all success with your sustainable, innovative, circular and strategic tenders. If you want to keep up to date with our work and key developments in sustainable and innovation procurement in 2019, subscribe to our newsletter here.



 

27 December 2018

Resource Centre – your go-to online library for all things Procurement

Want to learn more about green procurement? Eager to find a case study on sustainable food procurement? Curious about how the City of Rotterdam purchased charging stations for electric vehicles applying a joint procurement process? Need guidance on how to navigate procurement criteria on social responsibility?

Find the answers to those questions and more in our Resource Centre. With 850+ resources online it offers a wealth of knowledge in the field of public procurement. Browse through the reports, tools & guidance, case studies or projects. You can use the filter to search for instance for a specific topic or country.

We update the Resource Centre on a regular basis, making sure that you have access to the latest knowledge generated to advance sustainable, circular, strategic and innovation procurement worldwide.

Something missing? We are always looking for relevant resources to add to the Centre, please contact us at procurement@iclei.org if you have any suggestion.

Get started here!

 

12 December 2018

3, 2, 1… Application to the Procura+ Awards 2019 is now open

Public authorities can now submit their candidacies to the 2019 edition of the Procura+ Awards, a major and prestigious recognition of procurements and related initiatives with remarkable economic, environmental and social impacts, or innovation elements. The Procura+ Awards is an initiative of ICLEI, in co-operation with the EU-funded Procure2Innovate project. The application period is open until 31st March.

The awarded public authorities will receive a trophy and have the right to promote themselves with the award title. The rewarded procurement activities will be widely promoted using a wide variety of ICLEI publications and channels. Furthermore, a case study on it will be produced and disseminated in the SP Platform and the PPI Platform. Winners will be granted a free entry and a presentation slot at the next conference organised by ICLEI.

Participants in previous editions have highlighted that participating in the Procura+ Award helped them to benchmark themselves and to gain visibility. For winners, it was a good way to prove their commitment to sustainability and innovation, as well as to earn internal and external recognition. Watch the video of the 2018 Award Ceremony:

There are three categories of the Procura+ Award: Sustainable Procurement of the Year, Innovation Procurement of the Year, and Procurement Initiative of the Year. The winners of the last edition were the Government of Flanders (Belgium), for its framework contract for sustainable office supplies; the City of Rotterdam (Netherlands), for making the city accessible for citizens with special mobility needs, and the City of Barcelona, for implementing a city-wide compulsory sustainable procurement.

For more information on the 2019 Awards, and to download an application form, visit the Procura+ website.

 

6 December 2018

Catalan Regional Tender Results in Low Emission Vehicle Fleet

“Meeting the goals of the Paris Agreement could save about a million lives a year worldwide by 2050 through reductions in air pollution alone.” This is the main finding of a WHO report released this week at the occasion of the COP24 currently taking place in Katowice (Poland). One of the most dangerous and costly public health threats, air pollution in urban areas is one of the top policy priorities in the EU and worldwide.

Cities themselves can be part of the solution by purchasing low emission vehicles. Only a year ago the fleet for service and police vehicles of the Catalan Association of Towns and Counties consisted of 95% diesel vehicles, which contribute significantly to poor air quality. Thanks to a new framework agreement awarded in 2018, 308 new vehicles were purchased, over 80% of which are low or zero emission vehicles.

The call for tender for the new framework contract was developed as part of the European project SPP regions, which promoted the creation and expansion of European regional networks of municipalities working together on sustainable public procurement (SPP) and procurement of innovation. Collaboration among the public bodies sends a stronger signal of demand for sustainability and innovation to suppliers and help local authorities achieve ambitious sustainability targets.

Read the full case study here.

More inspiring examples of how public procurement can promote health and air quality can be found in our Resource Centre.

 

4 December 2018

At the cross-roads: take the right turn towards electric buses

This week, all eyes are on Katowice (Poland) and the Climate Change Conference COP24, where countries have to agree on how they will achieve the the goal of minimizing climate change to less than 2°C warming, decided three years earlier at COP21 in Paris. In his opening address Antonio Guterres (UN Secretary-General) highlights which steps need to be taken immediately to get closer to reaching this goal – one of them is the electrification of transport, which accounts for a large share of greenhouse gas emissions and contributes to dangerously poor air quality in cities.

A new report titled “Electric buses arrive on time“ (Transport & Environment), examines the transition towards sustainable, low carbon transport through public procurement. It maps out the shift from diesel powered to electric busses in Europe. “In 2017, the number of electric bus orders more than doubled - from 400 in 2016 to more than 1,000. In 2018, the market share is estimated to be around 9%, marking the transition from niche to mainstream and the beginning of a steep and necessary uptake curve.”

Electric buses already offer a better total cost of ownership (TCO) than diesel buses when external (public health) costs are included. Beyond costs, electric buses offer many additional benefits compared to their fossil fueled counterparts: superior image and comfort, no stranded assets from investing in gas infrastructure, using locally produced (renewable) energy and ensuring energy sovereignty by replacing oil consumption.

The earlier cities transition to a zero emission bus fleet, the better.

However, there are challenges to implementation, for instance coping with the higher capital costs of zero-emissions buses. Lucien Mathieu, author of the report and transport and e-mobility analyst at T&E, has a solution for that, too: “a grant could be made available through the new EU budget from 2020. This should be complemented by a Europe-wide zero emission sales target for new buses.”(Euroactiv)

For inspirational examples of zero emission public procurement, visits the website of ICLEI led European project BuyZET, in which cities use procurement of innovative solutions for zero emission urban delivery of goods and services.

For more case studies on the topic of clean urban transport, head over to our resource centre.

 

26 November 2018

Circular Procurement - taking a bold step for sustainability

A recently published report titled ‘Building circularity into our economies through sustainable procurement’, (UNEP) explores how to integrate circular economy in public procurement. The report highlights the power of institutional purchasing and advocates for circular procurement as a tool that advances the sustainability goals.

The report outlines two pillars of implementing circular public procurement and provides guidance for public authorities on how to put them into action: 

Pillar 1 - Promoting circular supply chains by procuring more circular products, materials and services - such as using circular procurement criteria in tender specifications.

Pillar 2 - Promoting new business models based on innovative and resource-efficient solutions - such as adopting supplier take-back systems

These strategies need to be enabled by cooperating with other organizations or new legal instruments that favour circularity in value-chains. For purchasing units wishing to get started, the report provides lessons such as ‘start with easy wins’ or ‘engage suppliers at an early stage’.

Additional powerful drivers to advance the inclusion of circularity in procurement practices are setting ambitious targets - as cities around the world did as part of the Global Leads City Network on Sustainable Public Procurement (GLCN), as well as knowledge sharing and actively contributing to international initiatives such as Procura+.

The report draws from previous work by, among others, the EU and ICLEI, showing that circular public procurement is already applied by forward thinking public bodies. There are many good practice cases to learn from, which you can explore in our Resource Centre

Read the full report here.

 

21 November 2018

Wanted: Your Feedback on Benchmarking Innovation Procurement

The draft results are out of the Benchmarking of National Policy Frameworks for innovation procurement across the EU Member States, Norway and Switzerland.

The benchmarking exercise is led by the European Commission following recommendations from the European Research Area and Innovation Committee (ERAC) to create an EU-wide measurement framework for innovation procurement, and an EU knowledge sharing service to exchange experiences. The exercise is done across all 28 European Member States plus Norway and Switzerland with expenditure measurement across different sectors of public interest (e.g. health, transport, security etc.) and strategic expenditure categories, such as ICT, that fuel public sector modernization. 

The next step needs support from the procurement community and interested stakeholders: Any comments on the country profiles? Good practice examples you want to share? Provide your comments on the Country Profiles and share any good practice examples via the online consultation - by 15 January 2019.

 

15 November 2018

Did you know: We have only one Planet Earth

“We are the first generation that has a clear picture of the value of nature and the enormous impact we have on it. We may also be the last that can act to reverse this trend. From now until 2020 will be a decisive moment in history” – concludes the Living Planet Report 2018, recently published by WWF. The report shows the devastating environmental consequences of our way of production and consumption for biodiversity. For instance, almost 20% of the Amazon has disappeared in just 50 years.

The report emphasizes that biodiversity loss is not only unfortunate in and of its own, but it risks the very foundation of human prosperity: “As we better understand our reliance on natural systems it’s clear that nature is not just a ‘nice to have’.” Healthy ecosystems offer services worth about US$125 trillion a year that enable us as human species to thrive.

The report highlights that “Consumption is the driving force behind the unprecedented planetary change we are witnessing, through the increased demand for energy, land and water”. Thus, procuring products, goods and services sustainably across sectors and along supply chains is a significant part of the solution to re-design how humans can thrive within capacities of the Earth’s ecosystems.

For a shift in processes, practices and structures, concepts such as circular procurement or sustainable public procurement (SPP) are necessary and already applied by forward thinking public authorities. To learn how your procurement department can make a change have a look at our Resource Centre.

If you want to get involved in this important transition, consider becoming a Procura+ member, joining a network of European public authorities and regions that connect, exchange and act on sustainable and innovation procurement.

Read the full report, the summary and get to know more on how to take action.