Publication - Advice and guidance

Scotland's Digital Future: Scottish Public Sector Green ICT Strategy

How Scottish public sector organisations can reduce carbon emissions; plan for carbon reduction; and meet the Scottish Government's environmental targets.

40 page PDF

654.8 kB

40 page PDF

654.8 kB

Scotland's Digital Future: Scottish Public Sector Green ICT Strategy
Annex C: Best Practice Examples - Procurement

40 page PDF

654.8 kB

Annex C: Best Practice Examples - Procurement




Best Practice

Supply Chain

Checking the green credentials of suppliers to minimise the environmental impact of purchases.

Ask suppliers to:

  • Set out how they are taking steps to reduce toxicity levels in products;
  • How they use carbon neutral resources in manufacturing;
  • What steps they are taking to minimise packaging
  • What steps they are taking ensure the transport of goods is carbon neutral.
  • Building into contracts that suppliers take back/ recycle packaging.
  • Specify computers with high-efficiency Power Supply Units (power supply units convert mains AC power to the DC power needed by computers. Efficient computers minimise energy loss from this conversion in the form of heat (minimum 80% conversion))
  • Purchasing ICT devices that comply with Electronic Product Environmental Assessment Tool certification, most up-to-date Energy Star ratings, EuP Framework etc.

"Sweating" Equipment Beyond End Of Life Cycle

Extending set refresh points of devices to reduce the environmental impact of waste equipment.

  • Repair or upgrade specific components of older devices where cost effective (e.g. repair/upgrade if a few or cheaper components are involved).

Whole-Of-Life Costs

As a rule of thumb high quality equipment, has a longer shelf life and can be repaired or upgraded easier.

  • Investigate reparability/upgradability of equipment before purchasing or leasing, and factor into procurement and running costs to help extend refresh points/"sweat" equipment for longer periods;
  • Liaise with procurement specialists to ensure that contract awards take broad view of "lifetime" costs, and do not simply focus on what is on the initial price ticket.




Best Practice

Device Reduction and Consolidation

A strategy to reduce the number of devices (laptops, PCs tablets, mobile phones, printers etc.) to reduce power consumption. Industry standard ratios are:

PCs and laptops - 1 device per employee;

Printers/copiers etc. - 1 device to every 10 employees.

Undertake audit to establish the current ratios;

  • PCs and laptops/employee:
  • Undertake a persona survey of employees to establish what device they actually need to carry out their role.


  • Replace individual devices with multifunctioning devices;
  • Re-locate devices to shared areas rather than at end of desks etc.

Employee Behaviour

Change end-user behaviour to embed efficiency principles that become automatic over time e.g.

  • turning off desk-top PCs at the end of the day;
  • deleting unwanted emails/clearing out deleted and sent emails folders;
  • discouraging staff from using/download screensavers (monitors left running with an active screen savers use the same amount of energy as when the screen is in full use).
  • deleting obsolete or duplicate files;
  • using cloud based file hosting services (subject to security policies) for large attachments, rather than sending by email;
  • Setting printers to duplex and black & white as default to discourage single sided and colour printing.

Group and peer discussion, e.g. introducing a Green champion into a team (could be combined with general green issues, not just ICT). Supported by internal "marketing" campaigns; rewarding positive behaviours through awards at team or divisional level, and publicising achievements so staff can see the bigger picture.