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City of Vienna leads the way in sustainable procurement
News  posted by Rosalind Simpson  on October 15, 2014  

For 15 years, the City of Vienna has been leading the way towards ecologically sustainable procurement through EcoBuy (ÖkoKauf) Vienna, its public procurement programme. 

Since the inception of ÖkoKauf Vienna, the programme has seen impressive results in terms of accelerating change in ecological procurement activities within the City of Vienna and its affiliated enterprises. Health Care Without Harm (HCWH) Europe’s member, the Vienna Hospitals Association, has proven to be a real success story for the project. The association has worked towards savings of over 4000 kg in harmful solvents per year due to its involvement with the programme.

Expansion into English

HCWH Europe has also been involved with this programme for many years. In 2007, we completed the English translation of EcoBuy, a set of public procurement guidelines to help healthcare institutions protect the environment. We are pleased to announce that we have now completed another translation; this time, a leaflet on the Viennese Database of Disinfectants (WIDES) to coincide with the launch of the entire database in English.

WIDES is a vital tool for hospitals and other institutions that provides the information needed to take into consideration safety, environmental impact and efficacy when procuring disinfectants. “For many years, WIDES has helped procurers in Vienna and other German-speaking areas to buy disinfectant products that are less harmful for the workers who use them and for the environment,” states Marion Jaros, official at the Viennese Ombuds Office for Environmental of City of Vienna. “Now WIDES is available in English, the database can promote sustainable procurement of disinfectants on a global scale.” 

Fifteen years of inspiring initiatives

HCWH Europe is a vocal advocate for WIDES and the overall work of the City of Vienna in environmental protection. “WIDES has successfully led to a significant reduction of the impact of chemicals on workers and the environment,” adds Anja Leetz, Executive Director of HCWH Europe. “We congratulate the City of Vienna and partners for 15 years of EcoBuy and the great initiatives taken on greening procurement in the interest of a safer world for us all. It is our hope that other cities are now inspired by their success.”

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