Effective Date: September 14, 1998
|Responsible Office: Office of Headquarters Operations|
|Subject: Greening the Government Through Waste Prevention, Recycling, and Federal Acquisition|
By the authority vested in me as President by the Constitution and the
laws of the United States of America, including the Solid Waste Disposal
Act, Public Law 89-272, 79 Stat. 997,
as amended by the Resource Conservation and Recovery Act (RCRA), Public Law 94-580, 90 Stat. 2795, as amended (42 U.S.C. 6901-6907), section 301 of title 3, United States Code,
and order to improve the Federal Government's use of recycled products and environmentally preferable products and services, it is hereby ordered as follows:
Section 101. Consistent with the demands of efficiency and cost effectiveness, the head of each executive agency shall incorporate waste prevention and recycling in the agency's daily
operations and work to increase and expand markets for recovered, materials through greater Federal Government preference and demand for such products. It is the national policy to prefer
pollution prevention, whenever feasible. Pollution that cannot be prevented should be recycled; pollution that cannot be prevented or recycled should be treated in an environmentally safe
manner. Disposal should be employed only as a last resort.
Sec. 102. Consistent with policies established by the Office of Federal Procurement Policy (OFPP) Policy Letter 92-4, agencies shall comply with executive branch policies for the
acquisition and use of environmentally preferable products and services and implement cost-effective procurement preference programs favoring the purchase of these products and
Sec. 103. This order creates a Steering Committee, a Federal Environmental Executive (FEE), and a Task Force, and establishes Agency Environmental Executive (AEE) positions within each agency, to be responsible for ensuring the implementation of this order. The FEE, AEEs, and members of the Steering Committee and Task Force shall be full-time Federal Government employees.
For purposes of this order:
Sec. 201. "Environmentally preferable" means 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. This comparison may consider raw
materials acquisition, production, manufacturing, packaging, distribution, reuse, operation, maintenance, or disposal of the product or service.
Sec. 202. "Executive agency" or "agency" means an executive agency as defined in 5 U.S.C. 105. For the purpose of this order, military departments, as defined in 5 U.S.C. 102, are
covered under the auspices of the Department of Defense.
Sec. 203. "Postconsumer material" means a material or finished product that has served its intended use and has been discarded for disposal or recovery, having completed its life as a
consumer item. "Postconsumer material" is a part of the broader category of "recovered material."
Sec. 204. "Acquisition" means the acquiring by contract with appropriated funds for supplies or services (including construction) by and for the use of the Federal Government through
purchase or lease, whether the supplies or services are already in existence or must be created, developed, demonstrated, and evaluated. Acquisition begins at the point when
agency needs are established and includes the description of requirements to satisfy agency needs, solicitation and selection of sources, award of contracts, contract financing, contract
performance, contract administration, and those technical and management functions directly related to the process of fulfilling agency needs by contract.
Sec. 205. "Recovered materials" means waste materials and by-products that have been recovered or diverted from solid waste, but such term does not include those materials and
by-products generated from, and commonly reused within, an original manufacturing process (42 U.S.C. 6903 (19)).
Sec. 206. "Recyclability" means the ability of a product or material to be recovered from, or otherwise diverted from, the solid waste stream for the purpose of recycling.
Sec. 207. "Recycling" means the series of activities, including collection, separation, and processing, by which products or other materials are recovered from the solid waste stream
for use in the form of raw materials in the manufacture of new products other than fuel for producing heat or power by combustion.
Sec. 208. "Waste prevention" means any change in the design, manufacturing, purchase, or use of materials or products (including packaging) to reduce their amount or toxicity before
they are discarded. Waste prevention also refers to the reuse of products or materials.
Sec. 209. "Waste reduction" means preventing or decreasing the amount of waste being generated through waste prevention, recycling, or purchasing recycled and environmentally
Sec. 210. "Life cycle cost" means the amortized annual cost of a product, including capital costs, installation costs, operating costs, maintenance costs, and disposal costs discounted
over the lifetime of the product.
Sec. 211. "Life cycle assessment" means the comprehensive examination of a product's environmental and economic aspects and potential impacts throughout its lifetime, including
raw material extraction, transportation, manufacturing, use, and disposal.
Sec. 212. "Pollution prevention" means "source reduction" as defined in the Pollution Prevention Act of 1990 (42 U.S.C. 13102), and other practices that reduce or eliminate the
creation of pollutants through: (a) increased efficiency in the use of raw materials, energy, water, or other resources; or (b) protection of natural resources by conservation.
Sec. 213. "Biobased product" means a commercial or industrial product (other than food or feed) that utilizes biological products or renewable domestic agricultural (plant, animal, and
marine) or forestry materials.
Sec. 214. "Major procuring agencies" shall include any executive agency that procures over $50 million per year of goods and services.
PART 3-THE ROLES AND DUTIES OF THE STEERING COMMITTEE, FEDERAL
ENVIRONMENTAL EXECUTIVE, TASK FORCE, AND AGENCY
Sec. 301. Committees, Executives, and Task Force. (a) Steering Committee. There is hereby established a Steering Committee on Greening the Government through Waste Prevention
and Recycling ("Steering Committee"). The Steering Committee shall be composed of the Chair of the Council on Environmental Quality (CEQ), the Federal Environmental Executive
(FEE), and the Administrator for Federal Procurement Policy (OFPP). The Steering Committee, which shall be chaired by the Chair of the CEQ, is directed to charter a Task Force to facilitate implementation of this order, and shall provide the Task Force with policy direction in such implementation.
(b) Federal Environmental Executive. A Federal Environmental Executive Environmental Protection Agency, shall be designated by the President. The FEE shall chair the Task Force
described in subsection (c), take all actions necessary to ensure that the agencies comply with the requirements of this order, and generate a biennial report to the President.
(c) Task Force. The Steering Committee shall charter a Task Force on Greening the Government through Waste Prevention and Recycling ("Task Force"), which shall be chaired
by the FEE and composed of staff from the major procuring agencies. The Steering Committee, in consultation with the agencies, shall determine the necessary staffing and
resources for the Task Force. The major procuring agencies shall provide, to the extent practicable and permitted by law, resources and, support to the Task Force and the FEE, upon request from the Steering Committee. The Task Force shall have the duty of assisting the FEE and the agencies in implementing, this order, subject to policy direction provided by the Steering Committee. The Task Force shall report through the FEE to the Chair of the
(d) Agency Environmental Executives (AEEs). Within go days after the date of this order, the head of each major procuring agency shall designate an AEE from among his or her staff,
who serves at a level no lower than the Assistant Secretary level or equivalent, and shall notify the Chair of CEQ and the FEE of such designation.
Sec. 302. Duties. (a) The Federal Environmental Executive. The FEE, working through the Task Force, and in consultation with the AEEs, shall:
(1) Develop a Government-wide Waste Prevention and Recycling Strategic Plan ("Strategic Plan") to further implement this order. The Strategic Plan should be initially developed within 180 days of the date of this order and revised as necessary thereafter. The Strategic Plan should include, but is not limited to, the following elements:
(a) direction and initiatives for acquisition of recycled and recyclable products and environmentally preferable products and services;
(b) development of affirmative procurement programs;
(c) review and revision of standards and product specifications;
(d) assessment and evaluation of compliance;
(e) reporting requirements;
(f) outreach programs to promote adoption of practices endorsed in this order; and
(g) development and implementation of new technologies that are of environmental significance.
(2) Prepare a biennial report to the President on the actions taken by the agencies to comply with this order. The report also may incorporate information from existing agency reports
regarding Government-wide progress in implementing the following Executive Orders: 12843, Procurement Requirements and Policies for Federal Agencies for Ozone Depleting Substances; 13031, Federal Alternative Fueled Vehicle Leadership; 12845, Requiring
Agencies to Purchase Energy Efficient Computer Equipment; 12856, Federal Compliance with Right-to-Know Laws and Pollution Prevention Requirements; 12902, Energy Efficiency
and Water Conservation at Federal Facilities; and 12969, Federal Acquisition and Community Right-to-Know.
(3) In coordination with the Office of Federal Procurement Policy, the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), the General Services Administration (GSA), and the Department of Agriculture (USDA), convene a group of acquisition/procurement managers and
environmental, State, and local government managers to work with State and local governments to improve the Federal, State, and local governments' use of recycled products and environmentally preferable products and services.
(4) Coordinate appropriate Government-wide education and training programs for agencies.
(5) Establish committees and work groups, as needed, to identify, assess, and recommend actions to be taken to fulfill the goals, responsibilities, and initiatives of the FEE. As these
committees and work groups are created, agencies are requested to designate appropriate personnel in the areas of procurement and acquisition, standards and specifications, electronic
commerce, facilities management, pollution prevention, waste prevention, recycling, and others as needed to staff and work on these initiatives. An initial group shall be established
to develop recommendations for tracking and reporting requirements, taking into account the costs and benefits of such tracking and reporting. The Steering Committee shall consult with
the AEEs- before approving these recommendations.
(b) Agency Environmental Executives. The AEEs shall:
(1) translate the Government-wide Strategic Plan into specific agency and service plans;
(2) implement the specific agency and service plans;
(3) report to the FEE on the progress of plan implementation;
(4) work with the FEE and the Task Force in furthering implementation of this order; and
(5) track: agencies' purchases of EPA-designated guideline items and report agencies' purchases of such guideline items to the FEE per the recommendations developed in subsection, 302(a)(5) of this order. Agency acquisition and procurement personnel shall
justify in writing to the file and to the AEE the rationale for not purchasing such items, above the micropurchase threshold (as set out in the Office of Federal Procurement Policy Act at 41
U.S.C.428), and submit a plan and timetable for increasing agency purchases of the designated item(s).
(6) one year after a product is placed on the USDA Biobased Products List, estimate agencies' purchases of products on the list and report agencies' estimated purchases of such
products to the Secretary of Agriculture.
PART 4-ACQUISITION PLANNING, AFFIRMATIVE PROCUREMENT
PROGRAMS, AND FEDERAL FACILITY COMPLIANCE
Sec. 401. Acquisition Planning. In developing plans, drawings, work statements, specifications, or other product descriptions, agencies shall consider, as appropriate, a broad
range of factors including: elimination of virgin material requirements; use of biobased products; use of recovered materials; reuse of product; life cycle cost; recyclability; use of environmentally preferable products; waste prevention (including toxicity reduction or elimination); and ultimate disposal. These factors should be considered in acquisition
planning for all procurement and in the evaluation and award of contracts, as appropriate. Program and acquisition managers should take an active role in these activities.
Sec. 402. Affirmative Procurement Programs. (a) The head of each executive agency shall develop and implement affirmative procurement programs in accordance with section 6002
of RCRA (42 U.S.C. 6962) and this order and consider use of the procurement tools and methods described in 7 U.S.C. 5909. Agencies shall ensure that responsibilities for
preparation, implementation, and monitoring of affirmative procurement programs are shared between the program personnel and acquisition and procurement personnel. For the purposes
of all purchases made pursuant to this order, EPA, in consultation with such other executive agencies as appropriate, shall endeavor to maximize environmental benefits, consistent with
price, performance, and availability considerations, and constraints imposed by law, and shall adjust solicitation guidelines as necessary in order to accomplish this goal.
(b) Agencies shall establish affirmative procurement programs for all EPA-designated guideline items purchased by their agency. For newly designated items, agencies shall revise
their internal programs within 1 year from the date the EPA designated the new items.
(c) Exclusive of the biobased products described in section 504, for the EPA-designated guideline items, which are contained in 40 CFR part 247, and for all future designated guideline items, agencies shall ensure that their affirmative procurement programs require 100 percent of their purchases of products to meet or exceed the EPA guideline unless written justification is provided that a product is not available competitively within a
reasonable time frame, does not meet appropriate performance standards, or is only available at an unreasonable price. Written justification is not required for purchases below the
micropurchase threshold. For micropurchases, agencies shall provide guidance regarding purchase of EPA designated guideline items. This guidance should encourage consideration
of aggregating purchases when this method would promote economy and efficiency.
(d) Within 90 days after the date of this order, the head of each executive agency that has not implemented an affirmative procurement program shall ensure that the affirmative
procurement program has been established, and is being implemented to the maximum extent practicable.
Sec. 403. Federal Facility Compliance. (a) Within 6 months, of the date of this order, the Administrator of the EPA shall, in consultation with the Federal Environmental Executive,
prepare guidance for use in determining Federal facility compliance with section 6002 of RCRA and the related requirements of this order.
(b) EPA inspections of Federal facilities conducted pursuant to RCRA and the Federal Facility Compliance Act and EPA "multi-media" inspections carried out at Federal facilities
will include, where appropriate, evaluation of facility compliance with section 6002 of RCRA and any implementing guidance.
(c) Where inspections of Federal facilities are carried out by authorized States pursuant to RCRA and the Federal Facility Compliance Act, the Administrator of the EPA will
encourage those States to include evaluation of facility compliance with section 6002 of RCRA in light of EPA guidance prepared pursuant to subsection (a), where appropriate,
similar to inspections performed by the EPA. The EPA may, provide information and technical assistance to the States to enable them to include such considerations in their inspection.
(d) The EPA shall report annually to the Federal Environmental Executive on the results of inspections performed by the EPA to determine Federal facility compliance with section 6002
of RCRA not later than February 1st for those inspections conducted during the previous fiscal year.
PART 5-STANDARDS, SPECIFICATIONS, AND DESIGNATION OF ITEMS
Sec. 501. Specifications, Product Descriptions, and Standards. When developing, reviewing, or revising Federal and military specifications, product descriptions (including commercial
item descriptions), and standards, executive agencies shall consider recovered materials and any environmentally preferable purchasing criteria developed by the EPA, and ensure the,
criteria are complied with in developing or revising standards. Agencies shall report annually to the FEE on their compliance with this section for incorporation into the. biennial report to
the President referred to in section 302(a)(2) of this order. (a) If an inconsistency with section 6002 of RCRA or this order is identified in a specification, standard, or product
description, the FEE shall request that the Environmental Executive of the pertinent agency advise the FEE as to why the specification cannot be revised or submit a plan for revising it
within 60 days.
(b) If an agency is able to revise an inconsistent specification but cannot do so within 60 days, it is the responsibility of that AEE to monitor and implement the plan for revising it.
Sec. 502. Designation of Items that Contain Recovered Materials. In order to expedite the process of designating items that are or can be made with recovered materials, the EPA shall use the following process for designating these items in accordance with section 6002(e) of RCRA. (a) The EPA shall designate items that are or can be made with recovered material, by promulgating amendments to the Comprehensive Procurement Guideline (CPG). The
CPG shall be updated every 2 years or as appropriate after an opportunity for public comment.
(b) Concurrent with the issuance of the CPG, the EPA shall publish for comment in the Federal Register Recovered Materials Advisory Notices that present the range of recovered
materials content levels within which the designated items are currently available. These levels shall be updated periodically, after opportunity for public comment, to reflect changes
in market conditions.
(c) Once items containing recovered materials have been designated by the EPA in the CPG, agencies shall modify their affirmative procurement programs to require that, to the
maximum extent practicable, their purchases of products meet or exceed the EPA guidelines unless written justification is provided that a product is not available competitively, not
available within a reasonable time frame, does not meet appropriate performance standards, or is only available at an unreasonable price.
Sec. 503. Guidance on Acquisition of Environmentally Preferable Products and Services. (a) The EPA shall develop guidance within 60 days from the date of this order to address environmentally preferable purchasing. The guidance may be based on the EPA's September. 1995 Proposed Guidance on the Acquisition of Environmentally Preferable Products and Services and comments received thereon. The guidance should be designed for Government-
wide use and targeted towards products and services that have the most effect. The guidance may also address the issues of use of the technical expertise of nongovernmental entities and
tools such as life cycle assessment in decisions on environmentally preferable purchasing. The EPA shall update this guidance every 2 years, or as appropriate.
(b) Agencies are encouraged to immediately test and evaluate the principles and concepts contained in the EPA's Guidance on the Acquisition of Environmentally Preferable Products
and Services through pilot projects to provide practical information to the EPA for further updating of the guidance. Specifically:
(1) These pilot projects shall be focused around those product and service categories, including printing, that have wide use within the Federal Government. Priorities regarding
which product and service categories to pilot shall be developed by the individual agencies and the EPA, in consultation with the OFPP, the FEE, and the appropriate agency procurement executives. Any policy disagreements shall be resolved by the Steering
(2) Agencies are encouraged to use all of the options available to them to determine the environmentally preferable attributes of products and services in their pilot and demonstration projects, including the use of technical expertise of nongovernmental entities such as labeling, certification, or standards-developing organizations, as well as using the expertise of the National Institute of Standards and Technology.
(3) Upon request and to the extent practicable, the EPA shall assist executive agencies in designing, implementing, and documenting the results of these pilot and demonstration
(4) The EPA, in coordination with other executive agencies, shall develop a database of information about these projects, including, but not limited to, the number and status of pilot
projects, examples of agencies' policy directives, revisions to specifications, solicitation procedures, and grant/ contract policies that facilitate adoption of environmentally preferable
purchasing practices, to be integrated on a commonly available. electronic medium (e.g., Internet Web site). These data are to be reported to the FEE.
(c) Executive agencies shall use the principles and concepts in the EPA Guidance on Acquisition of Environmentally Preferable Products and Services, in addition to the lessons
from the pilot and demonstration projects, to the maximum extent practicable, in identifying and purchasing environmentally preferable products and services and shall modify their
procurement programs as appropriate.
Sec. 504. Designation of Biobased Items by the USDA. The USDA Biobased Products Coordination Council shall, in consultation with the FEE, issue a Biobased Products List. (a) The Biobased Products List shall be published in the Federal Register by the USDA within
180 days after the date oil this order and shall be updated biannually after publication to include additional items.
(b) Once the Biobased Products List has been published, agencies are encouraged to modify their affirmative procurement program to give consideration to those products.
Sec. 505. Minimum Content Standard for Printing and Writing Paper. Executive agency heads shall ensure that their agencies meet or exceed the following minimum materials content standards when purchasing or causing the purchase of printing and writing paper: (a) For high speed copier paper, offset paper, forms bond, computer printout paper, carbonless paper, file folders, white wove envelopes, writing and office paper, book paper, cotton fiber
paper, and cover stock, the minimum content standard shall be no less than 30 percent, postconsumer materials beginning December 31, 1998. If paper containing 30 percent postconsumer material is not reasonably available, does not meet reasonable performance
requirements, or is only available at an unreasonable price, then the agency, shall purchase paper containing no less than 20 percent postconsumer material. The Steering Committee, in
consultation with the AEEs, may revise these levels if necessary.
(b) As an alternative to meeting the standards in sections 505(a), for all printing and Writing papers, the minimum content standard shall be no less than 50 percent recovered
materials that are a waste material byproduct of a finished product other than a paper or textile product that would as determined by the State in which otherwise be disposed of in a
landfill, as determined by the facility is located.
(c) Effective January 1, 1999, no executive branch agency shall purchase, sell, or arrange for the purchase of, printing and writing paper that fails to meet the minimum requirements
of this section.
Sec. 506. Revision of Brightness Specifications and Standards. The GSA and other executive agencies are directed to identify, evaluate, and revise or eliminate any standards or
specifications unrelated to performance that present barriers to the purchase of paper or paper products made by production processes that minimize emissions of harmful byproducts. This
evaluation shall include a review of unnecessary brightness and stock clause provisions, such its lignin content and chemical pulp requirements. The GSA shall complete the review and
revision of such specifications within 6 months after the date of this order, and shall consult closely with the Joint Committee on Printing during such process. The GSA shall also
compile any information or market studies that may be necessary to accomplish the objectives of this provision.
Sec. 507. Procurement of Re-refined Lubricating Oil and Retread Tires. (a) Agencies shall implement the EPA procurement guidelines for re-refined lubricating oil and retread tires.
Fleet and commodity managers shall take immediate steps, as appropriate, to procure these items in accordance with section 6002 of RCRA. This provision does not preclude the
acquisition of biobased (e.g., vegetable) oils.
(b) The FEE shall work to educate executive agencies about the new Department of Defense Cooperative Tire Qualification Program, including the Cooperative Approval. Tire List and Cooperative Plant Qualification Program, as they apply to retread tires.
PART 6-AGENCY GOALS AND REPORTING REQUIREMENTS
Sec. 601. Agency Goals. (a)(1) Each agency shall establish either a goal for solid waste prevention and a goal for recycling or a goal for solid waste diversion to be achieved by
January 1, 2000. Each agency shall further ensure that the established goals include long-range goals to be achieved by the years 2005 and 2010. These goals shall be submitted to the
FEE within 180 days after the date of this order. (2) In addition to white paper, mixed paper/cardboard, aluminum, plastic, and glass, agencies should incorporate into their
recycling programs efforts to recycle, reuse, or refurbish pallets and collect toner cartridges for remanufacturing. Agencies should also include programs to reduce or recycle, as appropriate, batteries, scrap metal, and fluorescent lamps and ballasts.
(b) Agencies shall set goals to increase the procurement of products that are made with recovered materials, in order to maximize the number of recycled products purchased, relative to non-recycled alternatives.
(c) Each agency shall set a goal for increasing the use of environmentally preferable products and services for those products and services for which the agency has completed a
(d) Agencies are encouraged to incorporate into their Government Performance Results Act annual performance plans the goals listed in subsections (a), (b), and (c) above, starting
with the submittal to the Office of Management and Budget of the plan accompanying the FY 2001 budget.
(e) Progress on attaining these goals should be reported by the agencies to the FEE for the biennial report specified in section 302(a)(2) of this order.
PART 7-APPLICABILITY AND OTHER REQUIREMENTS
Sec. 701. Contractor Applicability. Contracts that provide for contractor operation of a Government-owned or -leased facility and/or contracts that provide for contractor or other
support services at Government-owned or -operated facilities awarded by executive agencies after the date of this order, shall include provisions that obligate the contractor to comply
with the requirements of this order
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