Low-carbon and circular economy accelerator for public procurements

We accelerate and provide coaching for municipal low-carbon and circular economy procurements. The dissemination of good practices will lead to a revolution in sustainable building, mobility and food services.


The annual value of public procurements by local authorities is nearly 20 billion euros. The way in which municipalities promote low-carbon and circular economy-boosting solutions and cleantech business has a large impact on the market. Promoting low-carbon objectives and a circular economy is essential if we want to curb the use of natural resources and mitigate climate change. In addition to environmental benefits, we can simultaneously achieve significant financial and social benefits.

These objectives and benefits are not acknowledged at an early enough stage or even at all during public procurements. Promoting circular economy and low-carbon objectives in public procurements will require an approach to procurements that develops practices and better identifies and makes more transparent the benefits.

What do we do?

The accelerator project links low-carbon and circular economy objectives to public procurements and, during the planning stage, assesses the benefits anticipated throughout their life cycle. The project seeks suitable services and products for procurements and joint procurement needs, which can include the option for a low-carbon life cycle and circular economy. The key themes are building, traffic and transport, and public catering services.

An expert working group will assess the cost and environmental benefits of the services and products, compile proposals for further measures and accelerate the preparation of competitive tendering in coached workshops and by using methods of market dialogue. The project will also lead joint procurements of a nationally significant size and provide information on low-carbon and circular economy procurements to parties responsible for procurements.

The work aims to disseminate good practices from the trial level to permanent operating practices. The project’s examples and their benefits will be published online for everyone to use.

 Who is involved?

The Finnish Environment Institute is responsible for co-ordinating the accelerator project’s activities. Participating partners include Inspira Oy and KL-Kuntahankinnat. The accelerator will work in co-operation with the Centre of Excellence for Sustainable and Innovative Public Procurements (KEINO).

Where are we now?

In spring 2018, the project sought suitable products and services for low-carbon and circular economy procurements and procurement needs, after which these products and services were assessed in more detail. Coaching began in spring 2018 and will continue until spring 2019. The first large joint procurement for electric and biogas vehicles will be organised in 2018. The project will last until August 2019.


Ask, tell, comment!

Laura Järvinen
Senior Lead, Biodiversity and everyday life
Samuli Laita
Senior Lead, Communications and Public Affairs

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