Office supplies

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Certifications and standards

There are many ways to change an office into a more environmentally friendly space. Sustainable office changes can save money, energy, and improve personal health. The following certifications and standards can help guide sustainable procurement options:

The Cradle to Cradle certification measures products against five sustainability performance categories, including material health, product circularity, social fairness, water and social stewardship, and clean air and climate protection.

The UL Ecologo certification is a life cycled-based environmental certification with criteria on materials, energy, manufacturing and operations, health and environment, product stewardship and more.

Things to consider

Before making a purchasing decision, consider these guiding principles on sustainable procurement:

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Buy credibly certified products

  • Make sure to request options that are third-party certified such as Cradle to Cradle and UL ECOLOGO.
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Buy circular

  • How long is the product and its components meant to last?
  • Does the product contain recycled components or materials? Have efforts been made to limit excess packaging and resulting waste?
  • Does the product and/or packaging contain reusable/replaceable parts? 
  • Does the vendor offer an end-of-life takeback program? If no, can the product and/or packaging be disposed of through existing campus waste programs? Refer to the Shift: Zero Sorting Guide if unsure.
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Buy from green suppliers