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Environmentally Preferable Purchasing

  • By: Susan H. Weaver
  • In: Green Business: An A-to-Z Guide
  • Edited by: Nevin Cohen & Paul Robbins
  • Subject:Sustainability, Environmental Policy & Law (general)

Environmentally preferable purchasing (EPP) refers to procurement policies that seek to minimize the environmental impacts of purchasing decisions. EPP, alternatively referred to as “green purchasing,” has been implemented in various forms by governments at all levels with the intent of using their purchasing power to strengthen markets for environmentally preferable products, and to lead the way to environmentally responsible purchasing decisions by example. While private firms and individuals also engage in EPP, except when taking collective action, their ability to sway markets is comparatively limited. Governments expend vast amounts of money annually to very effectively augment private sector demand both by government purchases and by providing incentives to manufacturers for developing greener products.

In the United States, EPP became federal policy with the adoption of Executive ...

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