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Environmental Edge
June 3, 2022

Judah Prero Discusses the Impact of PFAS Controls on Federal Procurement

Environmental Edge: Climate Change & Regulatory Insights

The Biden Administration has made a conscious effort to include considerations of environmental and climate related issues in policy decisions made by all federal agencies. One example of this approach was an announcement concerning federal procurement policy, made via Executive Order 14057 (EO), “Catalyzing Clean Energy Industries and Jobs Through Federal Sustainability.” The EO provides that agencies are to reduce emissions, promote environmental stewardship, support resilient supply chains, drive innovation, and incentivize markets for sustainable products and services by purchasing sustainable products and services identified or recommended by the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA). The White House explained that part of this dictate was to avoid procurement of items containing PFAS.

EPA’s recommendations are established through its Environmentally Preferable Purchasing Program (EPPP). EPA recently published a webpage that compiles how the private sector standards and ecolabels in EPA’s “Recommendations of Specifications, Standards, and Ecolabels for Federal Purchasing” (Recommendations)—a component of EPPP—specifically address PFAS in various product categories. The Recommendations—first published in 2015—identify private sector environmental performance standards or ecolabels that “most effectively address the environmental impacts of products and service and are verified to be appropriate for federal procurement.” The current version of the recommendations includes 40 standards and ecolabels in 25 purchase categories for cafeteria, construction, custodial, electronics, grounds/landscaping, machine shop operations, and office furniture products. The new PFAS webpage lists nine standards or ecolabels from the Recommendations that include criteria specifically focused on PFAS content.

Join environmental counsel Judah Prero as he discusses this intersection of environmental law and government contracts law with Government Contracts partner Mike McGill.

© Arnold & Porter Kaye Scholer LLP 2022 All Rights Reserved. This blog post is intended to be a general summary of the law and does not constitute legal advice. You should consult with counsel to determine applicable legal requirements in a specific fact situation.