Case: Consideration of environmental aspects in office procurements

Hansel offers its customers a number of framework agreements for procurement of office-related services and equipment, such as computers, network printers, all-in-one printers, office supplies and furniture. Environmental aspects are considered extensively in these agreements, and the products and services obtained through them fulfil certain environmental criteria set out by Hansel. The joint procurement procedure provides an easy way of increasing the number of environmentally friendly products in the government’s offices.

With regard to computers, Hansel’s demands include fulfilling the requirements of the Energy Star energy efficiency requirements. Attention is paid to recycling and decommissioning, and each supplier is required to give a price in the contract for picking up old equipment from customers for recycling, regardless of the make.

Network and all-in-one printers also come under the Energy Star energy efficiency requirements. All printer suppliers were required to provide reports on their environmental management actions and to give information on the power consumption of their devices in different states. Batteries included in the equipment may not contain cadmium, mercury, lead or any compounds thereof, except for impurities which are technically unavoidable. Suppliers are required to contribute to the reuse and recycling of the equipment they offer.

There are product-specific environmental requirements for office and ICT supplies. Suppliers must provide environmental reports. The supplier is responsible for providing the customer with ink cartridges and recycling boxes for batteries, and organising the appropriate recycling of the collected products. The supplier must also make every effort to optimise transport routes and to minimise CO2 emissions during transport and refilling.

Environmental factors are highlighted in the Office Furniture framework agreement. All wood and wood-based materials must derive from legally harvested timber, and at least 70% must come from sustainably managed forests. There are separate environmental criteria for the plastic, glues, textiles and metal parts in furniture. The suppliers must also offer a recycling service.

It is an objective of Hansel’s framework agreements to account for the recycling of discontinued products or packaging materials whenever possible. Appropriate recycling prevents the discharge of harmful substances into nature and reduces the environmental burden caused by the use of raw materials and non-renewable natural resources.