Commonwealth of Massachusetts

The Commonwealth of Massachusetts has been in the forefront of environmentally preferable purchasing (EPP) for years, and participated in the development of the EPEAT standard. It came as no surprise when they became the first state to reference EPEAT in a computer hardware contract, even before the standard was officially adopted.

EPEAT Simplifies EPP Procurement

As a leader in EPP, Massachusetts knows first-hand the value of EPEAT in simplifying the procurement of “green” computers. In 1999, Massachusetts issued an RFP for computer hardware that incorporated environmental criteria. This was not an easy task. Staff had to research and to define environmental attributes for this complex set of products, where experts can sometimes not agree on which attributes improve product environmental performance. Evaluating vendors’ responses was an equally difficult and time-consuming process, given the quantity and disparity of information provided by vendors in response to the solicitation.

Staff in the Massachusetts Operational Services Division – the organization responsible for writing specifications for statewide contracts – finds EPEAT attractive for multiple reasons. Saving time is an obvious advantage. A nationally recognized standard that is widely accepted by industry ensures a competitive bid process and the availability of products that meet price and performance requirements. The EPEAT system also allows the state to easily identify and compare products across attributes.

Big Results for The Commonwealth

Commonwealth of Massachusetts case studyOver 75 percent of the computer desktops, monitors, and notebook computers purchased by Massachusetts in FY07 were EPEAT. The Massachusetts state contract allows state agencies, municipal government and local school districts to select products from five vendors – Apple, Dell, Gateway (now MCP Computers), HP, and Lenovo – all with EPEAT product offerings.

The majority (almost 97%) of Massachusetts EPEAT purchases by all entities were EPEAT Silver rated, including 34,733 desktop computers, 17,055 LCD monitors, and 3,811 notebook computers. Massachusetts also purchased 1,733 EPEAT Bronze products. The table summarizes the environmental benefits resulting from EPEAT purchases in FY07 under the Massachusetts state contract.

Original publication date: 2007