Yesterdays post discussed The Design for the Environment (DfE) Program.

September 25th, 2009

During today’s post we will discuss some initial steps that retailers procurement organizations can take internally to support The Design for the Environment Program standard.

First and foremost as your company builds programs intended to support our environment with your through your procurement processes; is making the decision that corporately you will procure, reuse and resell Environmentally Preferable Products or (EPP). At a minimum company’s should at least make this a significant checks and balances system within their existing procurement processes. By definition, an environmentally preferable product is a product or service that has a lesser or reduced impact on human health and the environment when compared with competing products or services that serve the same purpose. Such products or services may include, but are not limited to those which contain recycled content, minimize waste, conserve energy or water, and reduce the amount of toxics either disposed of or consumed.

The above process commitment will ultimately have an impact on reducing your company’s carbon footprint. Your carbon footprint is “the total set of greenhouse gas emissions caused directly and indirectly by a company, person or other organization. Even products can have a carbon footprint measure based on how they are manufactured. Carbon footprints are measured by undertaking a greenhouse gas emissions evaluation. Once the size of a carbon footprint is known, a strategy can be devised to reduce it.

Creating a measurement system is more difficult although there are measurements that the government holds manufcuturers to. A simple process as a retailer that this author supports is what percentage of product procured went through this system of check and balances this quarter or this year versus last quarter or last year. Another would be what percentage of products that you reuse or resell would qualify as Environmentally Preferable Products versus the number for prior reporting periods.

This is a very simple process to put in place and something that consumers are looking for. Ask your procurement solutions provider how they can support you in this effort.

We look forward to and appreciate your comments.

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