Buying Green - Sustainable Purchasing
The University of Pittsburgh is committed to environmental stewardship through sustainable purchasing, conservation, and construction designed to conserve natural resources and preserve the environment. Our purchasing processes seek to balance the following objectives.
- Increase the purchase of products with a reduced or minimal environmental impact as compared to other similar products and services that serve the same purpose.
- Comply with regulations requiring sound financial stewardship by the University.
- Comply with regulations that require the University to identify business opportunities for diversity and disadvantaged suppliers.
What is Purchasing Services doing to facilitate sustainable purchasing?
- Provides environmentally preferable supply sources through active research and solicitation of bids on environmentally preferable goods and services.
- Works with suppliers to ensure that environmentally preferable products are easy to locate through clear product labeling and use of the PantherExpress System. See our list of contracted supplier programs for more information.
- Asks suppliers to provide clear environmental impact information for the entire life cycle of products.
- Educates University departments about sustainable purchasing practices.
- Provides management services to University departments with product inventories to reduce the excess or obsolete inventories that lead to waste or potential environmental and safety issues.
- Provides a paperless purchase-to-pay process via the PantherExpress System.
Purchasing Services also works closely with the Office of Sustainability to develop programs, provide outreach, or further support University sustainability initiatives.
What can department purchasers do?
In addition to utilizing the PantherExpress System for paperless purchasing of environmentally preferable products from our contracted suppliers, and taking advantage of the other contracted supplier programs, please review the General Guidelines for Sustainable Purchasing for steps you can take when purchasing for your department.
Tools, Tips & Resources
Commodity specific guidelines (Tools, Tips, and Resources) provide information on sustainable products available for your lab or office. Our contracted suppliers offer products that are green and sustainable.
Click selections below for information on specific commodities.
- Cleaning Products
- Ink & Toner
- Office Furniture
- Information about TreeZero Paper
Adjusting your printer default to two-sided printing can save paper as well as departmental resources.
Chemical Redistribution Program
University of Pittsburgh's Environmental Health and Safety offers a program where University Faculty and staff can donate uncontaminated chemicals that are not expired or obtain these chemicals free of charge. The EH&S Chemical Redistribution Program reduces expenses for both chemical purchasing and chemical waste disposal. The program emphasizes the University's commitment to environmental protection and sustainability by reducing the overall volumes of chemical waste generated.
To learn more about the program, including how to donate, aquire, ore review their inventory, visit the EH&S website.
Supplier Driven Sustainability Highlights
Visit this page for information about supplier-driven sustainability programs.
Sustainability at Pitt
The Facilities Management Division of the University created the 2018 Pitt Sustainability Plan.
In February, 2018 Pitt received a Silver STARS designation from the Association for the Advancement of Sustainability in Higher Education (AASHE).