Environmentally Preferable Products (EPP) are products or services that have a lesser or reduced effect on human health and the environment when compared with competing products or services that serve the same purpose. Such products or services may include, but are not limited to, those that contain recycled content, minimize waste, conserve energy or water, and reduce the amount of toxics disposed or consumed.
Today, more and more products are made from recycled materials—from the carpeting and insulation used in office buildings, to the reams of office paper purchased each day. Buying recycled helps "close the recycling loop" by putting the materials we collect through recycling programs back to good use as products in the marketplace.
The web resources listed below contain information on manufacturers and vendors of recycled products, environmentally preferable procurement programs, case studies, green procurement starter kits, model contracts, implementation information and buy-recycled training information. These sites can be utilized by city, county, state and federal government along with private industry.
Buy Recycled Program -California Integrated Waste Management Board's Buy Recycled Program that contains a recycled-content product database of manufacturers and vendors.
Commonwealth of Massachusetts EPP Products Procurement Page -Lists resources for procurement officials, product benefits and specification, fact sheets and other EPP web sites.
Co-Op America- Economic action to promote just and sustainable purchasing.
-Provides a listing of green companies and products, online discussion forums and more.
EPA Comprehensive Procurement Guidelines -Contains a list of products (construction, landscaping, paper, office, park and recreation, transportation, vehicular, etc), the accompanying recycled content recommendations, and information on the supplier and manufacturer of the product.
The Green Culture
-Founded in 1994, they offer "socially and environmentally responsible products and services over the internet" with over 80 categories to choose from.
Green Gift Guide- How to shop for creative, environmentally conscious gifts.
Green Order -An online resource for instituitional suppliers and buyers.
Green Environmental Purchasing -Resources for green product databases, list serves for purchasers and more.
GSA's Environmental Programs
-GSA's federal supply service provides green resources including comprehensive procurement guideline compliant products and other recycled content products.
King County Environmental Purchasing Program
-Provides green procurement policy statements, general contract language for contracts, and list of resources. Useful for county governments looking to set up their own green procurement program.
Recycle Now -Lists information on vendors of furniture, glass products, paper, plastic products and greeting cards made with recycled content.
MES offers a Buy Recycled Training Manual. The manual provides governments, businesses and institutions with information on the status of buy recycled programs nationally and gives a step-by-step description of ways to start or improve a buy recycled program. It includes information on topics such as available products, price, quailty, specs, waste prevention, record keeping and evaluation.
The NMWDA offers recycling specialists to evaluate your current waste disposal program and offer suggestions on implementing or improving a recycling program. This service is only available in Baltimore City and Anne Arundel, Baltimore, Carroll, Harford, Howard and Montgomery counties.
*The companies and web sites listed on this page are based on information provided by various agencies and organizations and does not represent an endorsement by the Maryland Department of the Environment.