Reviewing the UK Government's sustainability policy website introduced an interesting development on how it intends to move towards better and more sustainable purchasing practices for the public sector services. A section of the announcement is given here:Published by the Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs.UK Sustainable Procurement Action PlanOn 5 March 2007, the UK Government presented a package of actions to deliver the step change needed to ensure that supply chains and public services will be increasingly low carbon, low waste and water efficient, respect biodiversity and deliver wider sustainable development goals.
© Crown Copyright 2007
© Crown Copyright 2007
The UK Government Sustainable Procurement Action Plan will be crucial to achieving the Government's operations targets, which will deliver around 1 million tonnes of carbon dioxide savings by 2020.
I found this extremely interesting. A previous post on this site had a degree of relevance for myself, in that both could OR will play a part in integrating the desire for lower energy use (reduced CO2 equivalents) and reductions of environmental impacts from material sourcing. Integrating the principles of: Green Chemistry, Intellectual Property, Supply Chain Processes/Management and InterSpec
In this case, seeing the complementary nature of the objectives of the plan, with the goals of sustainable industry was immediately obvious.
Looking at the text, "The Government’s response to the Task Force and subsequent work with the private sector is intended to make rapid progress in the following key areas:
ii) Effective use of Government procurement power as an enabler to transform the market for innovative and sustainable solutions and make them more widely available and affordable to citizens and corporate buyers;", it seemed to me that there is may not be merely rhetoric, and that indeed substantial progress could be made - to pull or push - (depending on your perspective) clean technology development and utilisation and the introduction of more efficient supply processes development in the public and private sectors. Informatics has an important role to play in bridging the divide, and actually creating the physical "integration". The impacts of this policy document will have to be watched closely.