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What should a purchaser do when there are no standards or ecolabels?

Posted 16 February 2012 by Trevor Bowden to Ecolabel News.

Professional purchasers rely on ecolabels to identify trusted green products. However there are many product categories for which there are no standards and ecolabels, so if a purchaser wants to “buy green” in that case, what are they to do?

One option is to go for newer, cleaner products that are so ahead of the curve that a standard has yet to be created. Think cleantech. Should purchasers be helping forge new markets for the super-green products? What are the risks and benefits of doing so?

Our research partners University of Minnesota and The Sustainability Consortium are running a webinar on exactly this topic on Feb 21, 2012 — Procurement in Sustainability: from buying green products to creating green solutions”. The webinar is free and open for registration.

Nancy Gillis from the US General Services Administration (one of the world’s largest purchasers); Kevin Dooley from The Sustainability Consortium and Tim Smith from the University of Minnesota will be exploring existing and potential procurement efforts in designing, prototyping and testing new products and services with suppliers; and commercializing the successes through standardization and large scale buying.