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Columbia College Chicago
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Procurement is an area that impacts the entire college.  Sustainable purchasing can have a far-reaching impact on the college’s supply chain by specifying environmentally-friendly products from vendors, reducing shipping frequency and distance with local purchasing, recycled packaging, and requiring third-party product certifications.

What are we doing?

Green Printing Policy
Columbia’s Director of Purchasing created a Green Printing Policy aimed to eliminate desk side printers. This policy was supplemented with a new fleet of multifunctional Xerox devices which are set to Duplex printing. All obsolete desk printers are recycled. The policy is available to view onIRIS .
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Scheduling Deliveries
Purchasing schedules their vendor deliveries to reduce receiving multiple deliveries per week. This consolidates more materials per package eliminating packing waste. The practice also reduces emissions associated with transit deliveries. Purchasing also works with vendors to recycle used print cartridges. A swap occurs as materials are picked up for recycling when a shipment of new materials is delivered.
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Vending Machines
Under our contract, vending machines have to have energy saving motion sensors installed. Our vendor also stocks the machines with healthier snack options labeled Fit Pick.
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Office Water Filtration Units
Purchasing manages the contract for office X-stream water filtration units. These replaced the need for bottled water delivery services.
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Procurement Green Team
As part of the Sustainability Roadmap, Columbia has created a Procurement Green Team. The team members consist of staff from our office of Administrative Services including our campus Director of Purchasing.

The Procurement Green Team created the following vision to guide their policy development, goals, and initiatives:
The purchasing functions at Columbia College Chicago work to secure and/or re-use products and services for the College community to support the academic process in the manner that seeks to reduce all adverse effects to the environment from their fabrication, transportation and usage, while providing the best value in the marketplace.

Below are some of the ideal goals and actions for this team.

The Procurement Green Team's Goals:

  • Identify and eliminate non-essential and redundant items, non-energy efficient equipment, or administrative tools that can be converted to electronic methods.
  • Reduce the institution’s annual purchase of internal and external printing and associated resources.

The Procurement Green Team's Actions:

  • Develop a college-wide policy regarding all print materials, reducing overproduction of printed materials and overall paper purchases.
  • Continue to consolidate vendor orders to minimize deliveries.
  • Add to “Rich’s List,” developing a “re-use exchange” for all office and departmental supplies and equipment. 

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