Green procurement policy

Procurement policy and guideline documents set out the shared understanding of an organisation's approach to procurement.  It should include:


  • considerations about whole-of-life impact of products
  • guidance about the priority considerations relevant for the purchasing organisation, e.g. energy efficiency, water consumption, emissions during product use and disposal, air-miles, disposal/ take-back issues, and social impacts and benefits
  • guidance about the acceptable variation in price from a traditional product selection, e.g. is a 10% purchase premium acceptable for reduced operational cost?
  • the inclusion of relevant criteria in tender evaluation and documentation
  • a process for screening prospective suppliers for social and environmental compliance and commitment e.g. ISO14000
  •  an evaluation and monitoring protocol.


CitySwitch Quick Guide to Sustainable Procurement

The Australian Government has created a comprehensive Guide to Sustainable Procurement

The Australasian Procurement Construction Council has developed guides specific to six major procurement items. See more assistance and guides in the related resources section below.


Related resources

Slide Deck: Sustainable procurement fundamentals with ECO-Buy

These slides from an interactive workshop held for CitySwitch signatories in Melbourne and presented by experienced trainers EcoBuy provides an introduction to sustainable procurement.

Sustainable Procurement Quick Guide

This guide provides a step-by-step approach to introducing a sustainable procurement model to your organisation.

Best practice waste & recycling contracts for business

Get a best practice waste and recycling contract underway with the help of this Sustainability Victoria guide. This resource has been created to help small to medium sized businesses navigate the waste contract procurement process and to get the most efficient and cost effective service.


Lamp recycling can help reduce the amount of mercury being sent to landfill. FluoroCycle is a voluntary product stewardship scheme that seeks to increase the national recycling rate of waste mercury-containing lamps.

NSW Local Government Sustainable Choice Database

The Local Government NSW Sustainable Choice Database is a a membership-based program available to councils in NSW. It provides indicators of sustainability factors that may be attached to a company and/or its products.

USA Sustainable Procurement Policies

A collection of ten real Sustainable Procurement Policies from USA state administrations, complied by California's Buy Recycled program. 

APCC Sustainable procurement guides

The Australasian Procurement and Construction Council (APCC) provide guides to sustainable procurement of office paper, cleaning services, business machines, ICT products, print services, and office furniture, plus a guide to assessing the sustainability credentials of a contracted supplier, for example when writing tender documents.

Sustainable Procurement of Services Guide (AUS)

Detailed information about the sustainability issues to consider when procuring services, such as financial, best practice performance criteria that can be used in approaches to market and possible contract requirements. Produced by the Australian Government.


Ecospecifier has over 6,700 sustainable products and it is a leading global source of life-cycle assessed product information. Ecospecifier links independent information with a powerful search interface.

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