111 Soledad St., 5th and 11th floors
San Antonio, TX 78205
Finance Department - Purchasing Division
PO Box 839966
San Antonio, TX 78283-3966
Monday - Friday, 7:45 am - 4:30 pm Central Time
Environmentally preferred purchasing means products or services that have a reduced effect on human health and the environment when compared to competing products or services that serve the same purpose. Environmentally preferred purchasing considers both cost and the environmental impacts of a product or service.
The success of an environmentally preferred purchasing program is dependent on the collective effort and commitment of all City staff who are involved with the procurement of goods and services.
The purpose of this policy is to support the purchase of recycled and environmentally preferred products in order to minimize environmental impacts relating to City work. The Purchasing Division recognizes COSA employees can make a difference in favor of environmental quality. The aim of the Environmentally Preferred Purchasing Policy is to prompt all City staff involved in the procurement of goods and services to use environmental responsibility as a factor in their purchasing decisions. The Environmentally Preferred Policy addresses:
These preferred products will be purchased using the guidance and certification of the following organizations:
Recycling- means the processing of used or waste material so that it can be used again, instead of being wasted.
Contractor- means any person, group of persons, consultant, designing architect, association, partnership, corporation, or other business entity (including a supplier) that has a contract with the City of San Antonio or serves in a subcontracting capacity with an entity having a contract with the City of San Antonio for the provision of goods or services.
Designated Products- means recycled and environmentally preferable products and materials designated by the Purchasing Division and all City departments pursuant to this policy.
Environmentally Preferred Products- means products that have a lesser or reduced effect on human health and the environment when compared with competing products that serve the same purpose. This comparison may consider raw materials acquisition, production, manufacturing, packaging, distribution, reuse, operation, maintenance, or disposal of the product.
Minimum Content Standards- means standards maintained by the Purchasing Agency and the respected department specifying the minimum level of recovered material and/or post-consumer material necessary for designated products to qualify as recycled products.
Post-Consumer Material- means a material or finished product that has served its intended use and has been discarded for disposal or recovery, having completed its life as a consumer item. "Post-consumer material" is a part of the broader category of "recovered material."
Practicable- means satisfactory in performance and available at a fair and reasonable price.
Price-Preference- means a percentage of increase in price the City of San Antonio will pay to obtain a designated product.
Recovered Material- means waste material and by-products which have been recovered or diverted from solid waste, but do not include those materials and by-products generated from, and commonly reused within, an original manufacturing process.
Recycled Paper- means paper meeting the City of San Antonio’s minimum 30% post consumer recycled content.
Recycled Product- means a product manufactured using recovered material and meeting the City of San Antonio’s Minimum Recycled Content Standards.
The City shall acquire its goods and services in a manner that complies with federal, state, city laws and other requirements (e.g. City resolutions). The City shall purchase and use materials, products and services which are fiscally responsible, reduce resource consumption and waste, promote opportunities to lesser advantaged segments of the community, perform adequately, and promote human health and well-being.
Environmental factors to be considered in selecting products with provisions about specific chemicals (e.g. avoiding volatile organic compounds or harsh solvents/abrasives when possible) to include:
Fiscal factors to be considered include but are not limited to:
City departments shall use, where feasible, products that perform and have the least damaging/most beneficial environmental impact, including new environmentally preferred products, reusable products, recycled content, and recycled products. Recognizing the City’s role as a major purchaser of goods and services, the City shall seek opportunities to encourage and influence markets for environmentally preferable products through employee education, supporting pilot testing of potential new products, adopting innovative product standards and specifications and contracts, leveraging city-wide buying expertise, and embarking on cooperative ventures with other jurisdictions. All departments shall use, and require their contractors and consultants to use, products manufactured with the maximum practicable amount of recovered material, especially post-consumer material. Several contracts have been awarded which provide energy efficiency and green products, such as alternative fueled vehicles and equipment, recycled paper products, and office supplies.
The Purchasing Division and the Office of Sustainability shall coordinate with departments to collect data for performance tracking and evaluation of the City’s environmentally responsible purchasing program, compile records for the purpose of producing an annual summary of the City’s environmentally preferred purchasing actions, and for evaluating the effectiveness of these actions in reducing the environmental impacts of City procurement.
Nothing in the EPPP shall be construed as requiring a department to procure products that perform inadequately for their intended use or are unavailable at a reasonable price within a reasonable period of time. Nothing contained in this policy shall preclude departments from requiring recycled material content as a bid specification. However, it is strongly encouraged for departments to utilize products that are environmentally friendly, recycled, and/or beneficial to the environment. Reports from departments will provide information for summations of implementation of this policy. The report will require reasons for any non-adherence to this policy.