The GreenBuy Award Program recognizes DOE sites for excellence in “green purchasing” that extends beyond minimum compliance requirements. All Federal agencies, including DOE, are required to purchase products that are energy efficient, water efficient, made from biobased or recycled content, and are non-toxic or less-toxic than conventional alternatives. To help navigate this large and sometimes, overlapping requirements DOE developed a Priority Products List. The Priority Products List is the backbone of the GreenBuy Award Program because it helps DOE sites identify products with strong sustainability attributes.
The Priority Products List simplifies the process by identifying products that are frequently purchased by DOE facilities and that:
- Meet or exceed statutory requirements;
- Lower health and environmental impacts;
- Are regularly purchased products or services and a significant part of DOE spending;
- Reduce maintenance costs;
- Reduce waste management costs;
- Are covered by standards or eco-labels reflecting multiple attributes to extent possible;
- Conform to the Federal Guiding Principles for High Performance and Sustainable Buildings; and
- Support Federal sustainability program goals, such as the Federal Green Challenge.
This list was developed by DOE’s Sustainable Acquisition Working Group following extensive research and review of multiple standards.
Matt Moury, DOE’s Associate Under Secretary for Environment, Health, Safety and Security (EHSS), emphasized the value of the program: “GreenBuy shows that DOE sites can leverage Federal purchasing dollars to achieve mission goals while also reducing the environmental impact of their operations and improving the marketplace for greener products.”
Sites can qualify for GreenBuy Awards at three levels – Gold, Silver, or Bronze – based on meeting the goals of select products and categories.
- To Achieve Gold: Sites must demonstrate meeting the goals of a minimum of 9 products in at least 5 categories
- To Achieve Silver: Sites must demonstrate meeting the goals of a minimum of 6 products in at least 3 product categories
- To Achieve Bronze: Sites must demonstrate meeting the goals of a minimum of 4 products in at least 2 product categories
In 2018, AU-21 introduced a new set of awards to recognize leadership and continuous improvement in transitioning to more sustainable products. Sites that earn the GreenBuy Gold Award multiple times will qualify for these new awards.
- To Achieve Prime: Sites must earn GreenBuy Gold 3 times
- To Achieve Superior: Sites must earn GreenBuy Gold 5 times
- To Achieve Elite: Sites must earn GreenBuy Gold 10 times
EHSS’ Office of Sustainable Environmental Stewardship (AU-21), in coordination with the Office Management and Administration’s Office of Acquisition and Project Management, launched the GreenBuy Awards in fiscal year (FY) 2011.
Shab Fardanesh, the AU-21 Sustainable Acquisition Coordinator, notes that more than half of the DOE sites have participated in the GreenBuy Awards since its launch in FY 2011. “This voluntary program helps DOE sites systematically reduce their footprint through environmentally sustainable purchases,” says Fardanesh. “As an added bonus, employees can also use this information to make greener and healthier purchases at home.”
To learn more about the GreenBuy Program and its winners, please visit: https://www.fedcenter.gov/members/workgroups/sustainableacquisition/priorityproducts/