Penn State and Dell Computers help 'Plant a Tree'

University Park, Pa. -- Through negotiations during its annual bulk purchase of over 1,100 new laptop computers, Penn State Procurement Services took advantage of Dell Computers' "Plant a Tree for Me" program.

According to Dell, the program allows customers to offset their carbon footprint by giving them the opportunity to make a donation toward the planting of a tree. As a part of the deal specifically with Penn State, Dell agreed to offset the University's laptop purchase carbon footprint by planting 455 trees and it waived the donation cost, as well.

"The University is always looking for ways to expand its environmental initiatives," purchasing agent Doug Hendershot said. "By having this little extra element in the bulk buy this year, we can further our initiative and get all units involved, too."

In addition, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency's (EPA) Electronic Product Environmental Assessment Tool (EPEAT) has been a major environmental initiative in Procurement's bulk buy program in conjunction with Information Technology Services (ITS).

EPEAT evaluates the environmental attributes of electronics and computer hardware. It rates each item with a gold, silver, or bronze standard. Every laptop and desktop computer in the most current bulk buy purchase received a gold EPEAT rating.

"Identifying what's 'green' and what's not can be challenging," manager of strategic purchasing Meg Harpster said. "We like to work with legitimate organizations like the EPA and also get other Penn State units involved, too."

Other environmental initiatives and programs departments can take advantage of are multi-pack, which Dell offers to clients to reduce packing waste. Lion Surplus also provides computer recycling, which has saved over 750 tons of electronics from being shipped to landfills and has saved over $50,000 in landfill fees.

 

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Last Updated May 06, 2010