Green Procurement

Sustainable forms of production and consumption

4. Information for vendors

The TTC is a major purchaser of goods and services and recognizes the importance that its procurement decisions can make in contributing to environmental issues. It continually seeks opportunities to encourage and influence markets for environmentally preferable products and services (EPPs) through the adoption of innovative standards, specifications and contracts, while remaining fiscally responsible and ensuring continued safe operations.

The TTC has a Green Procurement Policy (approved July 2008), that directs the organization to continually improve procurement practices by integrating environmental considerations into every aspect of the procurement process. The policy applies to all procurement activities related to facilities, construction, revenue and non-revenue vehicles, operations, administration, as well as other supporting activities.

As technology and industry innovations become available, changes in procurement practices may include the purchase of new EPPs, increases in the purchase of eco-labelled products, as well as partnerships with suppliers to reduce impacts and costs.

Key products and services will be examined by TTC departments for opportunities to identify environmentally preferable products and services.

Your role

The TTC is very interested in working closely with vendors to align with its Green Procurement Policy, specifically to explore and identify:

  • new technologies or alternatives that are environmentally preferable;
  • ideas or suggestions about possible pilot projects;
  • ways to improve the TTC’s green procurement activities; and/or
  • your success stories or experiences.

The TTC has ensured that its Green Procurement Policy allows vendors the continued opportunity to supply goods and services through procurement activities that are accessible, encourage competition, ensure fairness, and meet existing laws and policies. The only difference is that the criteria for selecting suppliers and awarding contracts will be extended to include environmental considerations.

In addition to procurement activities, TTC departments may also choose to work on collaborative projects with vendors to improve supply chain, transport, logistics, packaging and overall environmental management practices. Below are examples of innovation projects that the TTC has conducted with its three top vendors:

  • Implemented a returnable crate system for miscellaneous small part deliveries from Harper Power Products;
  • Investigated the use of a returnable racking system to reduce the costs and impacts of glass delivery from Bombardier; and  
  • Analyzed parts deliveries from Daimler to inform the possibility of consolidating those into weekly versus daily deliveries.

In addition to the environmental and cost savings, these efforts have fostered a deeper understanding between the TTC and its vendors which is helping to facilitate the continual improvement of TTC's operations.

Will specifications in RFPs/tenders change?

As the TTC begins incorporating environmental and life cycle considerations into procurement decisions, technical specifications on request for proposals (RFPs)/tenders may change. These changes may require vendors to respond to product/service specifications that cover:

1. Performance specifications

  • Energy efficiency and consumption
  • Water consumption
  • Durability
  • Maintenance intervals, etc.

2. Technical specifications

  • Operating, maintenance costs
  • Recycled content and/or post-consumer recycled content
  • Waste and consumable use during operation
  • End-of-life handling, decommissioning, take-back and costs
  • Hazardous/toxic material or substance content
  • Reusable/recyclable packaging
  • Product and equipment refurbishment, reuse and repair

3. Vendor-based specifications

  • Environmental Management Systems (e.g. ISO 14001 certifications)
  • Environmental or Green Procurement Policies
  • Record of environmental fines or penalties

Note: Eco-labelled products / services may be utilized as proof of meeting the above technical and performance specifications.

Will Green Procurement change the product approvals process?

No. Ongoing efforts to screen products for safe and appropriate use by TTC staff will continue. The Safety Department will continue its work to screen existing and new product Material Safety Data Sheets (MSDS) prior to approval for use by the TTC.

What products will be affected first?

Initially, the TTC will be looking at products that have significant environmental impacts (e.g. energy-intensive products, products with high water use, products that contain toxins) and those for which third-party eco-labels already exist.

Where can I find more information on becoming a TTC vendor?

Please visit Procurement and Category Management.

Where can I find information on current advertised tenders?

If you have further questions, please contact

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