ECCI hosts Sustainable Procurement training

06 June 2012

50 representatives from Scottish Higher and Further education attended training events at ECCI this month in preparation for the Sustainable Procurement Bill, due to come into force next year. 

Organised by the University of Edinburgh, the events were run in partnership with Zero Waste Scotland (, and provided an opportunity for buyers, sustainability managers and end-users to come together to learn how the exotically named Marrakech Task Force on Sustainable Public Procurement (MTF on SPP) can help embed sustainability into procurement activities.

The highly interactive events allowed attendees to brush up on current knowledge, learn new techniques, try out tools and debate suitable approaches with peers from across the sector, using some example procurement projects.

The benefits of the MTF on SPP:

  • Aligns and will facilitate implementation of the Scottish Sustainable Procurement Action Plan.
  • Provides a consistent proportionate and relevant risk and influence based methodology for public sector buyers to follow facilitating the practical delivery of sustainable outcomes in practice.
  • Follows the procurement process and will be embedded into Routes 1, 2 and 3 of the Procurement Journeys by October 2012.  This will enhance the existing Sustainability Test, ensuring good procurement is sustainable procurement.
  • Helps organisations to recognise existing areas of good practice and enables them to build on this.
  • Helps organisations improve their sustainable procurement performance and assist progression through the Flexible Framework.

What is Sustainable Procurement?

‘A process whereby organisations meet their needs for goods, services, works and utilities in a way that achieves value for money on a whole life basis and generates benefits not only to the organisation, but also to society, the economy and the environment’.

Scottish Sustainable Procurement Action Plan

Background: MTF on SPP

The Marrakech Task Force is an international initiative, delivered through the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP) to advance the implementation of ‘Chapter III of the Johannesburg Plan of Implementation’ to accelerate a shift towards sustainable consumption and production.

In Scotland, Zero Waste Scotland, in partnership with DEFRA has signed up to the MTF on SPP to contribute towards delivery of a Zero Waste Scotland. MTF on SPP aligns to the Scottish Sustainable Procurement Action Plan.

Full list of represented HIEs:

University of Stirling

Glasgow Caledonian University

University of the Highlands and Islands (UHI)

University of Strathclyde

South Lanarkshire College

James Watt College

Edinburgh Napier University

Dumfries and Galloway College

The University of Edinburgh

University of the West of Scotland

Scottish Agricultural College

The Robert Gordon University

Borders College

Heriot-Watt University

University of St Andrews

Jewel and Esk College

Stevenson College Edinburgh

University of Aberdeen

University of Dundee