As the pendulum gradually swings to a more mainstream concept of Green business, there are some fundamentals that should come as a natural evolution of the process. As I have often said, many of the Green practices that could be included in a business application are not an expense item, nor are they difficult to apply. A Green clause paragraph seems like on of the most simplistic improvements for a Green business, and it goes a long way to improve the community and industries that your company serves.
The Green clause is frankly quite simple, and it can easily be inserted into nearly any RFP or contract proposal. We are making this a matter of public access that can be modified or adjusted to fit the company’s situation:
“In harmony with the EPA’s ‘Environmentally Preferred Purchasing,’ we (require/prefer/desire) that all bids submitted include an independent Green Certification of the company, products, or workers required via the proposed contract. Green certification refers to the operational aspects of the company often referred to as ‘Green Practices.’ Self-assertion of environmental merit does not resolve potential greenwashing concerns. Therefore, a company demonstrating an environmentally credible operation by an independent review shall be a minimum requirement for all vendors, suppliers, and business relationships.”
If you think about it, this process is like any other bid requirement. It passes no extra cost over to the company sending out RFPs, and your company can still seek competitive bids. In many cases, the Green practices of the bidding company are not more expensive, but a transition to the Green alternatives.
One of the big missing pieces in the success of the Green business community is to “Give Green a Chance.” (a la John Lennon). On the serious side, “Buying Green” is simply good ethics when companies is asking its customers to “Buy Green” from them. The irony of a company touting its products or services but turning around and buying in an environmentally-thoughtless manner is basically a kind of hypocrisy that cannot be be respected.
Green Path Assessment gives this practice a 25 point value for Green business certification points.