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NHS Trust goes green with Office Depot

29 May 2013

Following a six-month review of its procurement practices, South Essex Partnership University NHS Foundation Trust (SEPT) has successfully implemented a ‘green switch’ on its office supplies

The Trust has been working closely with Office Depot for the last six months in a bid to replace existing office materials with sustainable alternatives wherever possible.

The overhaul is a part of The Trust’s pledge to meet the high standards set in its Sustainable Development Management Plan & Implementation Framework, and marks a significant step forward in implementing a long-term commitment to sustainable operations. SEPT is also the first NHS Trust nationally to implement this approach, following Government recommendations on sustainability within the public sector.

As part of the green switch, SEPT undertook a comprehensive review of the products that are currently used, with Office Depot sourcing and recommending green alternatives wherever available. All suggested green products were then subject to rigorous tests to ensure that they could deliver the same level of quality as their less green counterparts. Following the extensive evaluations, SEPT has now switched over 375 products for more sustainable substitutes, including paper, pens and remanufactured toner cartridges.

As well as significantly reducing the Trust’s carbon footprint, the procurement review is expected to save SEPT over £37,000 per year. Office Depot will now continue to recommend greener alternatives to SEPT as these products come available to the market, to ensure The Trust remains at the forefront of public sector sustainability.

SEPT Chief Executive, Dr Patrick Geoghegan, said: “The success of the green switch represents our pledge to make our day-to-day operations more sustainable. Our goal now is to maintain the high standards we have set by continuing to work with Office Depot in sourcing green alternatives.”

Stuart Derbyshire, Head of Public Sector at Office Depot, said: “SEPT’s commitment to sustainability demonstrates the multiple advantages associated with a greener procurement process. By putting sustainability at the top of the procurement agenda, an organisation can vastly improve its environmental impact, and as in the case of SEPT, can also lead to lower costs.”

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