Departmental Performance Report 2013–14

Section 7 Departmental Sustainable Development Strategy (FSDS)

SSHRC is subject to the Cabinet Directive on the Environmental Assessment of Policy, Plan and Program Proposals. However, during the 2013–14 reporting cycle, SSHRC did not have any proposals requiring the approval of cabinet. Thus, SSHRC has a nil report on the strategic environmental effects of its programs on the 2013–16 FSDS goals and targets in Themes I—Addressing Climate Change and Air Quality; II—Maintaining Water Quality and Availability; and III—Protecting Nature and Canadians, as well as on the 2010–13 FSDS for Theme IV—Shrinking the Environmental Footprint—Beginning with Government.

SSHRC is bound by the Policy on Green Procurement but not by the Federal Sustainable Development Act.

Green Procurement Reporting for Departments and Agencies bound by the Policy on Green Procurement but not the Federal Sustainable Development Act

In compliance with Section 7 of the Policy on Green Procurement, it is mandatory for all departments and agencies bound by the policy to plan and report on their green procurement initiatives even if they are not bound by the Federal Sustainable Development Act.


SSHRC acquires and manages its major assets through the Common Administrative Services Directorate (CASD). The Chief Financial Officer, who is also the Vice-President of CASD, has been mandated to address aspects of the Policy on Green Procurement.

  1. Approach:

    A key element of SSHRC’s approach to setting and meeting green procurement targets is to continue to leverage Public Works and Government Services Canada (PWGSC) procurement instruments, which are designed to meet federal government green procurement standards. For a small agency like SSHRC, it is more effective to leverage the benefits of these existing green procurement instruments.

    In addition, SSHRC’s strategy for maximizing green procurement for fiscal year 2013–14 emphasized staff awareness and training for key personnel, and included green procurement objectives in the performance evaluations of key decision-makers. As part of its organizational business transformation initiatives, SSHRC decentralized the purchasing of office supplies and introduced an acquisition card program.

  1. Management Processes and Controls:
  2. SSHRC used PWGSC procurement instruments as its primary procurement mechanism.

    All contracting documents included a clause addressing environmental considerations in the performance of the work required.

  1. Specific Targets:
    1. SSHRC has maintained its reduction in paper consumption by making two-sided printing mandatory and by increasing the use of online submissions and electronic distribution of procurement documents.
    2. Stationery and office supplies were targeted to ensure that, whenever feasible, PWGSC green standing offers were used for their purchase. Environmentally preferable alternatives were identified using the standing offers in the “Recycled” and “Environmental Considerations” columns.

    In addition, SSHRC has taken the following steps toward greening government operations:

      1. promoted the use of established standing offers for goods and furniture that support the Policy on Green Procurement;
      2. encouraged employees to reuse and recirculate unneeded or unused office supplies;
      3. promoted the use of videoconferencing equipment as an alternative to travel allowing SSHRC to reduce its carbon footprint;
      4. continued to ensure that surplus electronic and electrical waste (e.g., computer equipment and electrical wiring) were handled in an environmentally appropriate manner (e.g., whenever possible, re-use strategies were considered, including donation to the Industry Canada Computers for Schools Program);
      5. disposed of electronic waste according to the requirements of the Federal Electronic Waste Strategy;
      6. decentralized the purchasing of office supplies and introduced an acquisition card program for just-in-time procurement, reducing the level of office supplies kept in inventory and providing for electronic invoicing and payments to suppliers, which decreases paper consumption;
      7. limited paper documentation provided to participants during meetings, workshops and conferences, and implemented the guidelines in the Environment Canada Green Meeting Guide for hospitality services by avoiding the use of disposable dishes and single-serve containers (e.g., bottled water) and by hosting meetings at hotels that possess an environmental rating for accommodations of four Green Keys; and
      8. procured and used approved eco-label cleaning products.
  1. Training:
    1. All existing indeterminate procurement and materiel management functional staff have taken the Canada School of Public Service Course 215 on Green Procurement as part of the current on‑boarding program. The training has been integrated in the training curriculum and is now part of the on‑boarding program for procurement specialists.
    2. Internal awareness on green procurement was raised with key stakeholders involved with acquisitions during assessment meetings. In addition, procurement staff members regularly provide information to managers on green procurement options available through PWGSC procurement tools.
    3. Management has increased staff awareness of environmental practices, such as limiting the number of printed copies of documents and using two-sided printing and copying.
  1. Performance Evaluation:

    The manager, Procurement, Contracts and Materiel Management, and procurement staff have an objective included in their performance management agreement to ensure environmental considerations are taken into account in all procurement activities.

  1. Meeting Targets:

    Green procurement strategies will be reviewed midyear to ensure that they are on track for achievement by the end of fiscal year.