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Solid Waste Management Coordinating Board Contacts and Resources
Each county has information on waste preventionAn activity that prevents waste at its source, which includes reducing the amount of material used and/or the toxicity of the material used to accomplish any task; reuse of a product in its original form; and use of repairable, refillable, or durable products that result in a longer useful life., recycling, environmentally preferable purchasing, waste management, and environmental rules and regulations specific to that county.
Anoka County Integrated Waste Management
Carver County Department of Environmental Services
Dakota County Environmental Management Department
Hennepin County Environmental Services
Ramsey County Environmental Health Section
Washington County Environmental Services
Statewide Contacts and Resources
Minnesota Office of Environmental Assistance (MOEA)
Minnesota Pollution Control Agency (MPCA)
Minnesota Technical Assistance Program (MnTAP)
Minnesota Waste Wise
Environmental Choice Program
For more information, visit www.environmentalchoice.com or contact 800/478-0399.
Environmental Purchasing Starter Kit
To order, call 202/393-6226 or visit the NACo web site.
U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) Environmentally Preferable Purchasing Program
Green Seal Choose Green Reports
Contact Green Seal at 202/872-6400 or visit the Green Seal Green Products Database.
Life Cycle-Based Products
The disks can be obtained by contacting the National Pollution Prevention Information Clearinghouse at 202/260-1023.
Minnesota Department of Administration
Minnesota Recycled Products Directory
To search an on-line database of products, visit the OEA web site or call OEA's Education Clearinghouse at 651/215-0232 or 800/877-6300 to receive a copy of the Directory.
Recycled Products Guide
The Resourceful Waste Management Guide (RWMG)
Source Reduction Procurement Guide
To order a copy of the Guide, contact NRC at 703/683-9025 or visit NRC's Source Reduction Forum.
Health Care Environmentally Preferable Purchasing (EPP) Network Information
Health Care Pollution Prevention Web Site
The Health Care Environmental Purchasing Tool
How to Implement an EPP Program in Your Hospital
Sustainable Hospitals Project
Minnesota Sustainable Design Guide
Northeast Recycling Coalition (NERC) Ð EPP Network (EPPnet)
RecycleStore, a marketing co-operative of recycled content product manufacturers.
Oikos Green Building Source maintains information on green building news, events, products, and companies.
ENERGY STAR® contains information about products that use less energy.
EPA "Purchasing Decision Wizard" helps users compare the environmental attributes of various cleaning products.
General Services Administration Federal Supply Service offers a wide range of environmentally-oriented products and services.
Office of Federal Environmental Executive's (OFEE) includes background information on OFEE's mission, history, staff, events, and resources for implementing Executive Order 13101Entitled Greening the Government Through Waste Prevention, Recycling, and Federal Acquisition, Executive Order (E.O.) 13101 was signed by the President on September 14, 1998. This Order replaces E.O. 12873 and reinforces the federal government's efforts to buy recycled products and other environmentally preferable products. E.O. 13101 establishes a process for amending the Comprehensive Procurement Guidelines (CPG) originally promulgated under E.O. 12873. E.O. 13101 requires the U.S. environmental Protection Agency (EPA) to amend the CPG every two years or as appropriate. The Order also requires EPA to issue Recovered Materials Advisory Notices concurrent with the CPG amendments, and to update them periodically. Recovered Materials Advisory Notices (RMANs) provide purchasing guidance and recommend recovered and post-consumer material content levels for designated items. RMAN recommendations are guidance and therefore are not codified in the Code of Federal Regulations..
Looking for Information on a Particular Material?
Using the Symbols
Less HazardousProducts containing hazardous chemicals can pose health risks to employees and the public, as well as threaten the environment. In addition, hazardous products often require special and costly waste disposal methods. Buy products that are labeled with none of the following signal words or those with the lowest level of hazard possible (but that still get the job done).
- Caution: mild to moderate hazard
- Warning: moderate hazard
- Danger: corrosive, extremely flammable, or highly toxic
- Poison: highly toxic
If less-hazardous alternatives are not readily available, use the least amount of a hazardous product needed to accomplish a task. Use up all of the product before throwing the container or packaging away.
Conserves EnergyReducing energy use is important because most energy production contributes to problems such as carbon dioxide emissions (tied to global warming), mercury releases, acid rain, volatile organic compounds, and nuclear waste. The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency and U.S. Department of Energy developed the Energy Star label to help purchasers identify energy-efficient products. These products reduce utility bills and help the environment.
Recycled ContentRecycled-content products save energy and resources, while also keeping waste out of landfills and incinerators. Recycled-content products can be made with post-consumer content, pre-consumer content, or a mix of both. Products made with post-consumer recycled content support our recycling programs at home and at work. If people do not buy products with post-consumer recycled content, manufacturers will no longer want the paper, cans, glass, or plastic we separate from trash. Pre-consumer content comes primarily from manufacturer scrap, and as such does not directly support such recycling efforts.
Prevents WasteMinnesota generates over 5 million tons of municipal solid waste annually, and this amount is increasing every year. Much of this waste comes from disposable and over-packaged products. Preventing waste can conserve natural resources and avoid the need to build new, expensive waste disposal facilities. You prevent waste when:
- Reducing the amount of material you buy to accomplish any task;
- Reusing a product in its original form; or
- Using repairable, refillable, or durable products.
Low Volatile Organic Compounds (VOCs)VOCs evaporate ("volatilize") easily at room temperature and often have a sharp smell. They are contained in many products, such as office equipment, adhesives, carpeting, upholstery, manufactured wood products, paints, solvents, pesticides, and cleaning products. Some VOCs can cause cancer in certain situations, especially when they are concentrated indoors. When VOCs hit sunlight, they create ozone, an air pollutant harmful to both people and plants. Many low-VOC versions of products reduce risks to human health and the environment.
Conserves WaterLess than 1% of the Earth's water is available for human consumption. There is no "new" water on Earth. Dry spells have reminded us that our water supply can be threatened - even in the Land of 10,000 Lakes - resulting in watering bans in some municipalities. Choosing products and services that conserve water, such as automatic flushers and low-flow faucets and toilets, can conserve this vital resource while reducing water and sewer bills.
End of Life ManagementWhat happens to a product after we use it? Some materials cannot go in the trash because they are hazardous in some way and therefore need separate - and sometimes expensive - special management. Some products are more easily recycled than others that do the same job. Making wiser buying choices can prevent a disposal concern at the end of a product's useful life, keep hazardous materials out of the environment, and expand options for recycling and reuse.
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Environmentally Preferable Purchasing Guide published by the Solid Waste Management Coordinating Board, 4/00. The SWMCB includes members from the Minnesota metropolitan counties of Anoka, Carver, Dakota, Hennepin, Ramsey, and Washington, with ex-officio members from the Minnesota Pollution Control Agency.Last Revised January 29, 2013 - 4:37pm