The German Environment Agency provides a product-group specific Excel tool that helps procurers to include life cycle costing (LCC) into their tenders in order to promote environmental friendly products and thus contribute to relieving the environment.

Implemented in

  • Europe and Central Asia
  • Germany

Sector of activity
Public Procurement

Type of initiative
Capacity Building & Implementation, Policy Frameworks & Tools

Type of lead actor
Government / public sector

Start date
13/12/2018

Shared by

Anja Mager

Federal Ministry for the environment, nature conservation and nuclear safety

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Objectives

When purchasing goods and services, the most inexpensive offers are often not the most economic ones. Inexpensive products might cause higher follow-up costs compared to more expensive alternatives. Such higher costs might arise, for example, from the consumption of auxiliary materials or energy during the usage phase, the installation and maintenance costs and the costs at the end of the useful life (in particular costs for picking up, disposal and recycling). This includes the costs arising from external effects of the environmental pollution which are associated with the advertised capacity during the life cycle. Life Cycle Costing includes these factors in the calculation of the actual costs for a product. For that reason, the method can also be used to promote environmentally friendly products and thus contribute to relieving the environment.

A product-group specific Excel tool of the German Environment Agency provides assistance in the calculation of life cycle costs of computers, multi-functional devices, monitors, computing centres, floor coverings, refrigerators and dishwashers. It considers all essential cost categories, such as cost of acquisition, operating costs and costs of disposal.

Activities

The tool has last been revised in 2018. New product-groups have been included. It is being offered to procurers on the central procurement website of the German Environment Agency (www.beschaffung-info.de, website available in English), accompanied by a training script regarding the use of life cycle costing in procurement (forthcoming).

Impact and Results

By providing the LCC tool with all relevant data and an easy to fill in operating mask, the barrier to implement life cycle costing into the tendering is lowered significantly. This enables procurers to emphasize environmentally friendly products with manageable effort.

Next steps and how to get involved

Download the LCC-tool (in German): https://www.umweltbundesamt.de/en/topics/economics-consumption/green-procurement/life-cycle-costing

Download the training script (in German – Winter 18/19):
https://www.umweltbundesamt.de/en/topics/economics-consumption/green-procurement/incorporating-green-procurement-into-your