In a newly adopted report, the European Economic and Social Committee (EESC) calls for mandatory circular public procurement across Europe to break governments’ unsustainable consumption patterns.
With an annual expenditure accounting for some 14% (some 2 trillion EUR per year) of the EU’s overall GDP, governments are Europe’s biggest consumers. Their expenditure stems mainly from public tenders to purchase the works, services and supplies they need from companies.
To encourage public authorities to embrace more sustainable consumption patterns through lifecycle thinking, looking beyond short-term needs to the longer-term impacts of each purchase, considerable work has been done in the EU over the last few years.
The European Commission has since 2017 issued guidance in the form of Green Public Procurement criteria, phasing in circular economy elements to close energy and material loops in supply chains, while minimising negative environmental impacts and waste creation. Continue reading “Public authorities should be required to allocate tenders based on lifecycle impact of purchased goods and services”