Wednesday, July 29, 2020

Wolf Administration Nationally Recognized For Excellence In Sustainable Electronics Purchasing

On July 29, the Department of General Services, Bureau of Procurement announced it has been honored for its excellence in purchasing sustainable electronics with the
2020 EPEAT Purchaser Award, according to Secretary Curt Topper.
The Commonwealth was one of only 10 states recognized with this honor.

Pennsylvania made $27,840,482 in EPEAT-registered purchases in the Computers & Displays and Digital Imaging categories in Fiscal Year 2018-19. 

“When Governor Tom Wolf signed his executive order establishing the first statewide goal to reduce carbon pollution, he intended to position Pennsylvania as a leader in green policies to address climate change,” Sec. Topper said. “He challenged us to look beyond infrastructure and to identify other ways to reduce our carbon footprint and be more energy efficient.

“The Commonwealth’s commitment to purchasing sustainable electronics meets that challenge and considers that while we want to have technology that is long-lasting, the environmental effects of that equipment should not be long-lasting. Sustainable electronic equipment not only reduces our carbon pollution and is durable, but it’s also environmentally friendly and reusable. We are proud to be recognized for setting the bar for the safe and sustainable use of electronic equipment for generations to come.”

During the 2018-19 fiscal year, the Commonwealth purchased more than 40,000 eligible products that met either “Gold” or “Bronze” Electronic Product Environmental Assessment Tool, or EPEAT, criteria. 

The criteria consider materials selection, design for product longevity, reuse and recycling, energy conservation, end-of-life management and corporate performance. 

In total 97.8 percent of the Commonwealth’s Computers & Displays and Digital Imaging equipment achieved a gold (91.6 percent) or bronze (7.1 percent) EPEAT rating.

“Purchasing sustainable electronics provides us with an opportunity to not only reduce our carbon footprint and prevent toxic chemicals from reaching our environment, but to experience cost savings as well,” Topper noted. “Through our responsible purchasing of green electronics, we will see energy reduction costs of nearly $2 million over the life-cycle of this more energy-efficient equipment.

“The Commonwealth is a high-volume purchaser of technology giving us a great opportunity to be environmentally and financially responsible. It has become a common practice for the Bureau of Procurement to require our vendors to supply us with green technology. 

“I also want to thank the DGS Bureau of Procurement’s IT and Quality Assurance divisions for their hard work to ensure that the Commonwealth’s efforts and achievements in sustainable electronics did not go unnoticed.”

The energy savings associated with the green electronics purchases is enough electricity to power nearly 4,070 US households for a year. The carbon footprint reduction is equivalent to annually removing 2,231 passenger cars from the road. The amount of toxic substances avoided from re-entering the environment is 23,480 pounds.

The EPEAT is a resource administered by the Green Electronics Council where organizations can find or promote electronic products that meet certain environmental performance criteria. 

The Green Electronics Council maintains the EPEAT website and product registry and recognizes organizations for their purchases of EPEAT-registered products.

Visit DGS’ GreenGov Council webpage to learn more about sustainability initiatives in state government.

Related Article:

GreenGov Council: 3% Drop In State Govt. Energy Use; Renewable Energy Purchases Offset 40% Of Energy Load

[Posted: July 29, 2020]  PA Environment Digest

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