GSA plans BPAs with green IT in mind
Agency wants IT with no harmful environmental effects
- By Matthew Weigelt
- Mar 23, 2011
The General Services Administration’s IT Commodity Division is gathering input from industry as it considers the possibility of several blanket purchase agreements (BPAs) for buying a variety of leading IT products.
The BPAs, which could last between three and five years, would include IT products and related services, such as hardware, laptop PCs, smart phones, maintenance and product training, among others, according to an new information request. GSA officials are expecting discounts by volume sales and the latest technology through GSA's IT 70 Multiple Award Schedule.
GSA plans to issue a request for quotes in April.
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The Washington Management Group reported the request for information in today’s Wednesday Weekly newsletter.
Along with the lower prices for buying more, GSA officials want contractors to be working to lower their greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions, to have no impact on the environment, and to promote the agency’s sustainability initiatives. The green requirements are part of GSA Administrator Martha Johnson’s main focus since taking the position.
GSA has said it plans to “make and move markets” by emphasizing green products and procurements.
In the request for information, GSA asks whether a company has done a comprehensive GHG emissions inventory as well as its goals for reducing GHG emissions and making a zero environmental footprint. It also asks about IT product sustainability efforts or achievements.
Since 2010, agency officials have wanted more information from companies on their GHG emissions and how those emissions are measured. They have been planning to determine the benefits and challenges for companies to make inventories and disclose emissions data in a registry.
GSA's sustainability initiatives are about not wasting anything and using resources efficiently, as much as they are about protecting the environment, Johnson said in a keynote address at GSA’s Interagency Resources Management Conference March 15.
In its BPA research, GSA officials are also pushing contractors to meet hard-and-fast deadlines and they want real-time tracking of their orders on company websites.
“A goal of this initiative is to reduce both cost and delivery time for existing and emerging technology,” the information request states.
Matthew Weigelt is a freelance journalist who writes about acquisition and procurement.