Executives from Office Depot, certification and consulting company DEKRA, World Resources Institute, Goodyear Tire & Rubber and others are leading a sustainable purchasing organization — slated to launch this summer — that aims to leverage the trillions of dollars spent by large organizations to drive environmental, economic and social sustainability.
The Sustainable Purchasing Council (SPC) says it will help institutional buyers incorporate sustainability in procurement decisions through a shared platform that guides, measures and recognizes leadership in sustainable purchasing, similar to the US Green Building Council’s LEED program.
SPC says its guidance will help organizations identify and reduce hidden costs associated with unnecessary waste and risk. It will also help organizations identify environmentally responsible actions that produce a return on investment by adding business value.
The group’s steering committee includes representatives from DEKRA, Office Depot, World Resources Institute, Goodyear, American University, the National Association of State Procurement Officials, UL Environment and the US Department of Energy.
The council, which is currently recruiting members that buy, supply or advise in the institutional procurement marketplace, will launch via a June 19 webcast, followed by a Founding Summit July 22-23 in Washington, DC.
Within 12 months of its launch, the SPC says it will provide members guidance on spend-related impact assessment methodology that includes training, tools and services. Its two-year goals include an application programming interface (API) that will allow eProcurement, enterprise resource planning and other software vendors to display SPC guidance within their tools and a pilot-ready version of its sustainable purchasing rating system.
The SPC says it will use a technical advisory process to assess and select the best scientific guidance available, and will put out a call for new guidance to be developed where guidance is found to be lacking, similar to the way USGBC uses technical advisory groups to review and select the best available guidance for green building.