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Sustainable Procurement Policy

Aston University’s Sustainability Policy states that we will “implement ethically and environmentally responsible procurement”.

The Sustainable Procurement policy supports this statement and provides guidelines and objectives for achieving a sustainable procurement procedure that is embedded in Aston’s culture. It is recognised that our purchasing decisions have a large impact outside of the University and this policy aims to minimise any negative environmental and social impacts; to this end we will:

  • Comply with, and where possible exceed, relevant legislation;
  • In the first instance, reduce the demand for goods and services by minimising waste and focusing on the re-use and recycling of existing goods;
  • Review environmental risks and target high-risk contracts and high-expenditure commodities;
  • Consider ‘whole life’ costs and impacts when assessing equipment for purchase;
  • Make Purchasing decisions based not only on economic, but also social and environmental factors;
  • Purchase and/or prioritise those items that are manufactured with a high recycled content;
  • In accordance with our accreditation as a Fairtrade University, consider products that are Fairtrade certified;
  • Include relevant sustainability criteria within all tender exercises and supplier appraisals, where legally appropriate;
  • Engage with suppliers to: Promote awareness, Encourage suppliers to adopt similar policies and sustainable approaches in their supply chains, Address barriers to entry for SMEs and local suppliers, Encourage development and promotion of new sustainable products, services and initiatives;
  • Raise internal awareness of sustainability issues through the promotion and communication of relevant goods and information;
  • Provide training on sustainable procurement for the appropriate people;
  • Define key areas for the University and suppliers and monitor and measure sustainable performance in these areas.

The policy will be implemented, monitored and reviewed by the Sustainable Procurement Working Group, the Aston Fairtrade Steering Group and the Sustainable Aston Working Group (reporting to the University Executive). In line with current procedure, the policy will be reviewed annually in September.

Approved by University Executive, October 2010; reviewed September 2013

Click here for a PDF version of the policy.

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