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Purchasing for Pollution Prevention Project INFORM, Inc. New York Headquarters: 212-361-2400.

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Presentation on theme: "Purchasing for Pollution Prevention Project INFORM, Inc. New York Headquarters: 212-361-2400."— Presentation transcript:

1 Purchasing for Pollution Prevention Project INFORM, Inc. New York Headquarters:

2 About INFORM Our three main program areas are: Chemical hazards prevention Chemical hazards prevention Solid waste reduction Solid waste reduction Sustainable transportation Sustainable transportation For more information about INFORM, please visit: Founded in 1974, INFORM is an independent research organization that examines the effects of business practices on the environment and on human health. Our goal is to identify ways of doing business that ensure environmentally sustainable economic growth. Our reports are used by government, industry, and environmental leaders around the world.

3 Project At a Glance Work with public entities to reduce the purchase of products that contain persistent bioaccumulative toxic chemicals (PBTs). PBT-Free Products Goal: Buy Less Toxic Products

4 Why Focus on Persistent, Bioaccumulative Toxins (PBTs)? Persistent chemicals do not degrade but remain in the environment. Persistent chemicals do not degrade but remain in the environment. Bioaccumulative chemicals accumulate in tissue, increasing in concentration as they are carried up the food chain. Bioaccumulative chemicals accumulate in tissue, increasing in concentration as they are carried up the food chain. Toxic chemicals cause harm in minute amounts. Toxic chemicals cause harm in minute amounts.

5 Most PBTs Leaving Manufacturing Plants End Up in Products Source: 1998 NJ Materials Accounting Data and MA Toxics Use Reductions Act Data

6 PBTs Are Also Produced When Products are Made or Discarded Paper bleached with chlorine can create dioxin during manufacture. PVC plastic bags may create dioxin when incinerated as waste. Examples:

7 What Products Are Being Targeted by INFORM? Products that contain any of the 53 chemicals on EPAs Draft RCRA Waste Minimization List of PBTs. Products that contain any of the 53 chemicals on EPAs Draft RCRA Waste Minimization List of PBTs. Products with readily available substitutes. Products with readily available substitutes. Contracts coming up for rebid by public entities in the coming year. Contracts coming up for rebid by public entities in the coming year.

8 INFORM Assists Public Entities By: Identifying products containing PBTs. Identifying products containing PBTs. Researching safer alternatives. Researching safer alternatives. Recommending purchasing specifications. Recommending purchasing specifications.

9 INFORM has created Fact Sheets for: Health Care Facilities Health Care Facilities Building Construction and Maintenance Building Construction and Maintenance Public Works and Fleet Management Public Works and Fleet Management Schools and Colleges Schools and Colleges Agencies Using Art Supplies Agencies Using Art Supplies

10 Health Care Example: Mercury-Free Equipment As a result of Massachusetts purchasing specs, now only mercury-free products are available on the states medical equipment contract. The state has tested vendors by trying to buy mercury products. Their response: Were not supposed to sell that. Bid solicitation: ftp://ftp.comm-pass.com/data/ PDF Contract announcement: ftp://ftp.comm-pass.com/data/ PDF

11 Building Maintenance Example: Lighting University of Minnesota solicited bids for low-mercury fluorescents and high-pressure sodium lamps. University of Minnesota solicited bids for low-mercury fluorescents and high-pressure sodium lamps. The U of M selected a vendor that will stock only low-mercury lamps where such applications exist. The U of M selected a vendor that will stock only low-mercury lamps where such applications exist. Low-mercury lights are marketed under such brands as: * GE Ecolux, * Philips Alto, and * Osram Sylvania Ecologic products.

12 Public Works Example: Vehicles Bids are pending in several states. INFORM recommends: Bids are pending in several states. INFORM recommends: Purchase of vehicles without mercury switches;Purchase of vehicles without mercury switches; Replacement of mercury light switches in existing vehicles;Replacement of mercury light switches in existing vehicles; Requirement that manufacturers disclose use of mercury and vinyl and plans for phasing them out.Requirement that manufacturers disclose use of mercury and vinyl and plans for phasing them out.

13 Schools and Colleges Example: Urinal Blocks INFORM helped Erie County (New York) to identify safer urinal blocks that avoid the use of paradichlorobenzene. INFORM helped Erie County (New York) to identify safer urinal blocks that avoid the use of paradichlorobenzene. County tested two alternatives in a high- traffic office building, library, and park. County tested two alternatives in a high- traffic office building, library, and park. Results led County to revise its janitorial contract to offer only non-para products. Results led County to revise its janitorial contract to offer only non-para products. Toxicity Reduction: 2,000 lbs of paradichlorobenzene annually


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