In Fall 2017, Lehigh implemented a university-wide Sustainable Purchasing Policy. This policy was written to establish a common interpretation of what Sustainable Procurement encompasses within Lehigh University and to ensure that University personnel consider social and environmental responsibility as factors in their purchasing decisions. Lehigh is committed to actions designed to conserve and protect the environment, and will continue to implement those actions whenever possible and economically feasible. In practice, the objective is to purchase products that have reduced environmental impact because of the way they are made, transported, stored, packed, used, and disposed.
By implementing a policy of sustainable purchasing, the University recognizes the following principles:
- Purchasing activities have a fundamental role in minimizing environmental impact and managing risks.
- Investment decisions delivered through the purchasing process must establish resilient infrastructure and supply chains to both mitigate and adapt to climate change.
- Economic, environmental and social objectives in purchasing activities cannot be viewed in isolation
Incorporated into the policy are environmentally preferable purchasing resources, Lehigh green product certifications, as well as a sustainable purchasing checklist.