Environmentally Preferable Purchasing (EPP) 

Environmentally Preferable Purchasing involves procuring products or services that have a reduced impact on human health and/or the environment. Such products or services may include those which contain recycled content, minimize waste, conserve energy or water, or reduce the amount of toxic substances disposed or consumed by the user. Green purchasing puts into practice the ideals of the Waste Reduction Hierarchy (priority in this order: reduce, reuse, recycle, dispose).

Why Should Your Business Buy EPP Products?  

Environmentally preferable purchasing devotes procurement dollars toward products and services that hold fewer negative consequences for human health and the environment. This means they're safer to use and help protect the environment. A business might find that an EPP product works just as well as a product that has environmental drawbacks and it may actually save them money. It is important that purchasing agents “Ask the Question”, to find out if the products they order are available with Post Consumer Recycled content and other environmentally friend attributes. 

By engaging in "Green Purchasing," your company may benefit from:

  • Improved worker health and safety from less toxic/hazardous alternatives
  • Reduced health, operating, and maintenance costs (including hazardous material handling and disposal costs)
  • Reduced liabilities by using safer, less hazardous products
  • Improved company image, by conserving limited natural resources and closing the recycling loop.

Environmentally Preferable Purchasing Links

Finding safer products just got easier! EPA's Safer Choice Label
Green Seal Certified Products    

Electronic Product Environmental Assessment Tool

Energy Star, Energy Efficient Products Procurement

INFORM - Cleaning for Health Report & Fact Sheets

UMass Lowell Toxics Use Reduction Institute (TURI) Cleaning Laboratory
UMass Lowell Toxics Use Reduction Institute (TURI) Green Cleaning Lab 

EPA Sustainable Marketplace for greener products and services

US Govt. Federal Facilities Environmental Stewardship & Compliance Assistance Center, Buying Green: Supporting Databases and Tools

National Geographic - The Green Guide

Conservatree, recycled paper site


Agency of Natural Resources
Department of Environmental Conservation
Environmental Assistance Office

Main Building - 2nd Floor
One National Life Drive
Montpelier, VT 05620-3803

Environmental Assistance Contact Information