This past Monday – August 25 – Green Seal’s Communications Specialist Brie Welzer attended the National Institute for Government Purchasing (NIGP) 2014 Forum held at the Pennsylvania Convention Center.
In case you’re unfamiliar with this organization, NIGP’s mission statement is the following:
Developing, supporting and promoting the public procurement profession through premier educational and research programs, professional support, technical services and advocacy initiatives that benefit members and constituents since 1944.
Here are a few details from the event:
Our Team: Exhibitors at NIGP with Green Seal-certified products included: Diversey, Ecolab, Waxie Sanitary Supply, Georgia Pacific, Cintas, Grainger, MSC Industrial, and AmSan.
Our Client Support: We provided each of the above companies with an Anniversary Ribbon that highlighted the number of years a company has produced Green Seal-certified products.
Appreciated the Green Facilities: The Pennsylvania Convention Center uses Green Seal-certified cleaning products throughout their facilities and Green Seal-certified hand soap in their bathrooms.
Green Seal and Procurement – A Bit of Context:
Government and private procurement decision makers have significantly helped Green Seal pursue our mission – to green the economy – by “specifying” Green Seal-certified products in their bids. The “specification” means that procurement officers give preference to proven-green (certified) products. The specification can exist as a guidance document for procurement officers (“try to purchase X”) or as legislation that details procurement requirements (“you MUST purchase X”).
For example, in 2005, New York State passed legislation that required the procurement of green cleaning products for all elementary and secondary schools (in lieu of conventional products), and this was later expanded to all state agencies and public authorities. Language from a 2007 report describes this in more details:
“The main goal of the legislation, to provide environmentally preferable cleaning products for use in schools that are available in the same form, function, and utility, as traditional products has largely been achieved. There are numerous products available in each of the eight cleaning categories that were addressed by the Green Cleaning Guidelines. Of those categories, six (Glass Cleaner, Bathroom Cleaner, Carpet Cleaner, General Purpose Cleaner, Vacuum Cleaners, and Hand Soaps), are certified either by Green Seal, Environmental Choice, or the Carpet and Rug Institute (CRI) and serve to replace traditional, more toxic products.”
Back to Present Day:
On October 8th, at our 25th Anniversary Gala in Washington, DC, we’ll be presenting an award to one organization that has catalyzed the greening of public procurement: the Healthy Schools Network. Their guidebook titled “Healthy Purchasing for Healthy Schools: A Guidance Memo Green Cleaning + Five More Product Categories to Help Make Schools Healthier” in particular has helped numerous educational procurement and facilities teams. Check it out, and learn more about the greening of public procurement!