Responsible Purchasing Network


  • Reduced climate footprint
  • Reduced energy consumption
  • Eliminated waste
  • Improved workforce and customer health
  • Streamlined purchasing practices

Responsible Purchasing Consultants

Green procurement translates to more efficient, productive and environmentally responsible business. RPN is the proven expert in green purchasing. Our team of consultants develop customized, outcome-oriented strategies that bring clients closer to meeting their sustainability goals and improving their bottom line.

To learn how we can make measurable changes at your organization, please email RPN or call our office at 510-547-5475.

Environmentally Preferable Purchasing (EPP) Technical Support Services Provided by the Responsible Purchasing Network

RPN is capable of offering the following EPP technical support services to its members:

Conduct workshops for staff on specific EPP-related topics

  • Conduct a Sustainable Purchasing 101 workshop to educate staff about environmentally preferable purchasing (EPP) generally, including an overview of “best practices” in EPP program design and implementation
  • Conduct seminars on specific product categories such as recycled-content, office supplies and construction materials, energy-efficient IT and lighting equipment, low-toxicity cleaning supplies, compostable food service ware, etc. as a prelude to discussing how to “green” that product category in upcoming bid solicitations

Assist in the design and implementation of Sustainable Purchasing Program

  • Review (and recommend language for) draft EPP resolution and administrative policy
  • Meet with EPP Team members to review roles and responsibilities
  • Explore/document sustainable procurement vision, goals and plans
  • Facilitate strategy and prioritization discussion(s) among EPP Team members
  • Recommend methods that can be used to track the amount and impact of sustainable products purchased, including enlisting assistance from its suppliers
  • Apprise staff of national, state and relevant local EPP programs, trends, legislation, grants and opportunities to collaborate as a way to avoid duplication of efforts, reduce costs and leverage impacts

Develop fact sheets and resource materials, as needed

  • Draft memos explaining rationale for proposed environmental specifications to be presented to buyers and end-using departments
  • Draft for EPP Team approval a fact sheet explaining the environmental and/or health benefits, cost (savings), availability and performance of new sustainable products and services (including how to order from approved vendors) that have been added to price agreements. Fact sheets may also include results of pilot tests, environmental and cost calculators, and other resources.
  • Draft EPP case studies of departments that are successfully using EPPs and other information to be posted online

Assist in developing environmental bid specifications for upcoming solicitations that promote the highest combination of sustainability factors while meeting departmental technical requirements and ensuring sufficient competition

  • Develop/maintain a calendar of upcoming bid solicitations to target for environmental review;
  • Prioritize contracts based on size and expiration date, availability of existing standards, and potential for environmental and health benefits as well as opportunities for cost savings
  • Create “boilerplate” EPP language that can be added to multiple bid solicitations, as appropriate
  • Review contracts to identify environmentally preferable products offered by current vendors  
  • Recommend reliable, independent product certifications (eco-labels) that can be referenced in bid solicitations
  • Evaluate opportunities to purchase environmentally preferable goods and services by utilizing price agreements developed by the State of Washington, other municipalities, and cooperative purchasing programs (e.g., Western States Contracting Alliance, US Communities, etc.)

Determine cost, quality and supply of environmentally preferable products to replace traditional products currently being used

  • Identify suppliers of environmentally preferable goods and services that can be added to bid solicitation lists for prioritized product categories
  • Request samples of environmentally preferable products end-users to evaluate
  • Help departments design and conduct pilot tests of environmentally preferable products to ensure they meet their performance needs
  • Conduct “Total Cost of Ownership” analysis to identify products that offer the “Best Value” when utility, maintenance, disposal and other relevant costs are considered
  • Assist in developing bid solicitation documents and evaluation processes for sustainable goods and services
  • Help procurement staff prepare for pre-bid meetings where environmental and performance specifications will be explained to potential bidders and answer questions posed by potential bidders about the specs
  • Assist purchasing department in evaluating bid submissions and responding to any challenges by potential bidders relating to environmental specifications

Participate in EPP Team meetings (mostly by phone), as needed

  • Work with an EPP Team to draft agendas, take minutes, and prepare other briefing materials for monthly meetings/conference calls
  • Arrange for speakers from other jurisdictions, eco-labeling organizations, or cooperative purchasing programs to share information about product categories that will be reviewed in the future