The Abbey Newsletter

Volume 13, Number 6
Oct 1989


The Walgren Amendment in Context

The amendment to the Solid Waste Disposal Act that was introduced in the House during the first week in August by Rep. Doug Walgren (see the September issue of this Newsletter, front page) relates to the procurement program in Section 6002 (i) of that act, and if passed would change it to read as follows. The parts that the amendment adds are underlined.

Each procuring agency shall develop an affirmative procurement program which will assure that items composed of recovered materials will be purchased to the maximum extent practicable...

(2) Each affirmative procurement program required under this subsection shall, at a minimum, contain--

(A) a recovered materials preference program; (B) an agency promotion program to promote the preference program adopted ...

(C) a program for requiring estimates of the total percentage of recovered material utilized in the performance of a contract; certification of minimum recovered material content actually utilized, where appropriate; and reasonable verification procedures for estimates and certifications;

(D) annual review and monitoring of the effectiveness of am agency's affirmative procurement program; and

(E) a requirement that paper procured for printing, writing or archival uses which have enduring value be permanent paper according to voluntary consensus standards.

In the case of paper, the recovered materials preference program required under subparagraph (A) shall provide for the maximum use of the post consumer recovered materials referred to in subsection (h)(1).

(3) In developing the preference program, the following options shall be considered for adoption:

(A) Case-by-Case Policy Development: Subject to the limitations of subsection (c)(1) (A) through (C), a policy of awarding contracts to the vendor offering an item composed of the highest percentage of recovered materials practicable (and in the case of paper, the highest percentage of the post consumer recovered materials referred to in subsection (h)(1)), and wherever practicable a pH of 7.5 or higher. Subject to such limitations, agencies may make an award to a vendor offering items with less than the maximum recovered materials content.

(B) Minimum Content Standards: Minimum recovered materials content specifications which are set in such a way as to assure that the recovered materials content (and in the case of paper, the content of post consumer materials referred to in subsection (h)(1)) required is the maximum available without jeopardizing the intended end use of the item, or violating the limitations of subsection (c)(1) (A) through (C). Wherever practicable, paper shall be acquired which has a pH of 7.5 or higher.

Procuring agencies shall adopt one of the options set forth in subparagraphs (A) and (B) or a substantially equivalent alternative, for inclusion in the affirmative procurement program.

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