California Department of Resources Recycling and Recovery (CalRecycle) 

California Greenin'

Buying Green

Why Purchase Green Products?

Buying green products or a recycled content material provides a variety of benefits that can range from financial, human health and the environment, to larger societal benefits.

Financial costs and benefits are the easiest to quantify. The purchasing price and frequency of purchase is weighed against operating costs, maintenance repair and replacement costs, occupational health costs, and liability. In contrast, environmental and societal costs and benefits are much harder to quantify and incorporate into decision making.

Commonly cited benefits include reduced air pollution and water emissions, materials and energy efficiency, less waste in landfills, reductions in hazardous and toxic substances, increased durability, etc. Many times we can't place a specific value to the benefits without extensive study. That is why there is legislation that directs the creation of allowable emissions or bans certain substances. It would be cost-prohibitive to analyze costs and benefits for individual situations.

Some of the economic benefits include but are not limited to:

  • Reducing materials consumption
  • Providing a useful outlet for collected recycled material
  • Reducing greenhouse gas emissions
  • Conserving water
  • Conserving energy
  • Increasing the use of renewable products
  • Reducing the presence of toxic and hazardous substances in the workplace and environment

These benefits in turn:

  • Improve public and occupational health and safety
  • Improve wildlife habitats
  • Decrease air, water, and soil contamination
  • Improve compliance with regulations
  • Decrease costs associated with waste management, disposal, and cleanup
  • Promote a sustainable economy
  • Develop markets for environmentally preferable goods and services

Green Guide

Green Building Specs and Standards

Organics

Construction and Demolition

Tire-Derived Products

Green Building Specs
and Standards

Organics

Construction and Demolition

Tire-Derived Products

Travel

Business Assistance

Financial Support

Environmentally Preferable Purchasing

Travel

Business Assistance

Financial Support

Environmentally Preferable
Purchasing Manual

Last updated: January 19, 2007
Green Procurement Guide, http://www.calrecycle.ca.gov/EPP/Procurement/
Public Affairs Office: opa@calrecycle.ca.gov (916) 341-6300