Inside this issue

1. SMART SPP news

-   Sustainable emerging technologies in focus

-   Innovation and procurement – a review of existing practices

-   Uncovering the main obstacles hindering the development of innovative

-   Greater London Authority and Torres Vedras join as associate authorities

2. Get involved! Opportunities for public authorities, developers and other interested parties

3. SMART SPP in your region

-   United Kingdom: ESPO and Bromley get SMART

-   Denmark: Encouraging sustainable innovation through procurement in Denmark

-   Spain: Barcelona commits to smart tendering of LED technology, electric
    vehicles and more for its citizens and staff

-   Portugal: LED street in Torres Vedras

4. What's next? Upcoming work on SMART SPP

5. Events

6. Other News

1. SMART SPP news

Sustainable emerging technologies in focus

LED close up

One of the most challenging tasks within the SMART SPP project is the identification of innovative “emerging” technologies, that is, products and services that are not yet widely available on the market. With this in mind, an assessment was made to identify the various emerging technologies available that will eventually provide high energy savings and are considered to be new and innovative. The assessment was based on extensive research, interviews with key manufacturers and suppliers, information gathered from expert seminars as well as feedback from the public authorities partnering in SMART SPP. 
The result is that four different product groups have been identified as the most promising, and are presented in more detail in the report on the In-depth Identification of Emerging Technologies. These are: lighting solutions for traffic, street and office lighting (LED and OLED technology), electric and hybrid vehicles, heating and cooling systems using renewable energies, and ICT (information and communication technology) solutions. The report highlights the advantages and disadvantages of the presented technologies, product availability and timeframe for further research and development (R&D) in the next 2-3 years, as well as the current and estimated future energy performance in relation to the current best available technology.

Regarding innovative lighting solutions, street and/or office lighting are especially suitable for a pre-commercial approach, for instance. These applications of the LED technology provide a great energy saving potential (for example, 30 percent more for street lighting) and are about to enter the mainstream market within the next 2-3 years. The same applies for plug-in hybrid vehicles, which use an innovative storage technology, such as lithium-ion batteries. Furthermore, the combination with innovative charging infrastructure powered by renewable energy resources should be taken into account.

In terms of heating and cooling systems, which use renewable energy sources (RES), cooling systems, especially those using adsorption, absorption and steam jet ejector chillers, are recommended for pre-procurement activities. However, the authors of the report found that well established RES heating technologies (especially solar heat, geothermal energy/heat pumps, biomass boilers and biogas co-generation plants) should also be taken into account if the planned procurement activities in the SMART SPP project catalyse the market entry in countries where these technologies do not yet exist. Last but not least, it was also found that computers using solid state drives should be considered for pre-procurement activities, not only because they are highly energy-efficient but also because of their technological benefits.

Download the report [pdf-file]

Innovation and procurement – a review of existing practices

There is an increasing recognition across European organisations that current procurement practices do not always lead to the most effective and most efficient outcome.

The SMART SPP report on Existing Approaches to Encourage Innovation through Procurement analyses current approaches used to move forward in the way that public procurement is used to drive sustainable innovation, particularly for those technologies and services that contribute to accelerate energy-efficiency.

According to the European Commission, public authorities “can make smart use of their large procurement budgets by requesting innovative solutions. In doing so, they can create the necessary demand for the development of, for example, more energy-efficient buses […].” Encouraging innovation, as identified by the report's authors, takes on one of the following three scenarios:

1. An authority wishes to act as a “launch customer” for the best available products on the market and thereby encouraging their greater market penetration.

2. An authority wishes to purchase a product or service meeting standards which are not yet achievable by the market, but would require minimal improvements in technology or new applications for existing technologies which would not entail a major investment in R&D.

3. An authority wishes to purchase a product or service meeting standards which go substantially beyond what the market is currently able to provide, and which would therefore require, at least, moderate investment in R&D.

The SMART SPP report reviews these scenarios and provides recommendations for public authorities on approaches and strategies to take to achieve greater dialogue and co-operation with the market to encourage sustainable innovation. The report also explores existing risk management, life-cycle costing (LCC) and CO2-equivalent monitoring tools that can be used in advanced public procurement procedures (such as competitive dialogue) to further support the introduction of innovative products and services.

Download the report [pdf file]

Uncovering the main obstacles hindering the development of innovative technologies

Knowing about the obstacles hindering the procurement of highly energy-efficient and environmentally friendly technologies is an essential step towards facilitating their procurement in the future.

Within the project a needs assessment was conducted to find out what public authorities and companies perceive to be the barriers to the procurement of such technologies. The findings were compiled in the report Needs assessment to encourage innovation through procurement.

The main issues arose by public authorities are to receive training to avoid legal and technical problems during the process, to count with technical knowledge or experts to define the specifications and to mitigate potential financial risks.

For companies it is important to be aware of the steps in the procurement process and that it is done in a transparent and clear way, to have enough time to react, to proper allocate Intellectual Property Rights (IPR) and to guarantee the products quality by third party certification.

When referring to the use of LCC and CO2 assessment approaches in procurement processes public authorities need training on the subject and political support to overcome the lack of knowledge and experience using such tools and the budget and competence dispersion in different departments respectively.

Download the report [pdf-file]

Greater London Authority and Torres Vedras join as associate authorities

The last few months have shown there to be considerable interest in the approaches developed through the SMART SPP project, both by public buyers and suppliers.

Public authorities from Finland, Austria, the UK and Portugal have shown a strong interest in, for now, commitments from the Greater London Authority (GLA) and the Municipality of Torres Vedras in Portugal.

Both the GLA and Torres Vedras have formally committed to pilot the Integrated Common Approach (developed through the project) and tender for sustainable innovative technologies and solutions using pre-procurement approaches. The GLA will tender for eco-friendly vehicles, as part of the UK government's scheme to promote more sustainable transport, while Torres Vedras will tender for LED street lighting and energy efficient electric vehicles.

2. Get involved in SMART SPP!

Become a participating public authority

Public authorities may participate in the implementation phase of the pilot at their own cost – participating in the pilot involves implementing the standard process for early market engagement, driving the adoption of the innovations developed through the project and ultimately incorporating its recommendations in at least one tender.

Benefits of participating include:

  • The opportunity to purchase emerging technologies that deliver improvements in performance over existing technologies, and
  • Access to assistance and advice on using a tailor-made pre-procurement process to increase efficiency in current procurement practices.

Become a participating public supplier

Suppliers of environmentally innovative products to the public sector can still  register their interest in participating in the market engagement stage of the project. Companies are invited to respond to the SMART SPP Prior Information Notice (PIN). The PIN serves to inform companies about the purchasing needs of the five public authority purchasers in the project. A PIN is a published statement from a public authority that it will tender for a certain product or service at a certain date in the future.

Technologies in focus include:

  • LED solutions for traffic lights, LED solutions for street lighting and (O)LED solutions for office lighting, including retrofitting solutions
  • Full EV solutions, including passenger cars and duty vehicles used in public authorities as well as complete system solutions, including plug-in EV and refilling stations
  • RES heating cooling solutions, including solar adsorption chiller for municipal buildings and other technology solutions currently in the end R&D phases
  • Solid State Technology based ICT equipment

Stay informed about SMART SPP

Interested public authorities and suppliers of innovative technologies are invited to get involved in SMART SPP. To find out more about becoming a participating supplier, participating public authority or to remain informed about the project's developments, please contact the SMART SPP project co-ordinator, Philipp Tepper on

Tell others to subscribe to this newsletter to receive regular updates (on a six month basis) about the project. Visit the project website to subscribe:

3. SMART SPP in your region

United Kingdom
ESPO and Bromley get SMART

LED light small

Both SMART SPP implementation partners from the UK - London Borough of Bromley and the Eastern Shires Purchasing Organisation (ESPO) - have made extensive progress in relation to SMART SPP over the last few weeks, with some exciting publicity and practical activity taking place.

SMART SPP was featured heavily at the recent 2 day Sustainable Purchasing Conference in Norfolk, UK. ESPO featured a SMART SPP display stand at the event and answered questions on behalf of delegates. A similar display will be featured at the Society of Procurement Officers (SOPO) Annual Conference in November this year. The Annual Conference will be attended by all seven of the main purchasing organisations servicing the UK, totalling over £2 billion per annum in spending.

The London Borough of Bromley has also been busy in their sustainable innovation actions. Staff at the borough council have already installed trial LED panels in the Property Department of the local Civic Centre to replace conventional fluorescent units. The feedback from staff has so far been very positive in relation to the quality and intensity of the light in their work environment. Bromley are now considering the installation of LED units during the course of refurbishment of a larger office block area in local Civic Centre.

Encouraging sustainable innovation through procurement in Denmark

National and regional promotion of the SMART SPP project actions in Denmark has been one of the main activities that the Danish SMART SPP project partner, the City of Kolding, has been working on during the last couple of months.

The SMART SPP project generated quite some interest after it was presented at the Danish national Green Purchasing Conference, GreenBiz09, in Copenhagen on 1 September. However, the highlight of the conference was the award for outstanding achievements in the area of green procurement that the City of Kolding received. The award was given by the Danish Panel for Professional Environmental Responsible Purchasing, launched by the Ministry for the Environment in 2003.

Further to the promotional activities, more targeted efforts are being made by the local authority partners from the City of Kolding to encourage sustainable innovation, through public procurement, on a larger scale in Denmark. Kolding are currently looking into finding a national Danish organisation to serve as a contact point to promote the topic as well as a national contact point that would provide technical support for tendering innovative lighting systems. More news on this topic to come in the next edition of the SMART SPP update.

Barcelona commits to smart tendering of LED technology, electric vehicles and more for its citizens and staff

Barcelona City Council, the SMART SPP implementing partner in Spain, has made an ambitious commitment to drive sustainable product and service innovation through its future purchasing actions.

Before entering into the agreement, representatives from various municipal departments gathered together for an update on the new activities and outcomes of the project and to assess the suitability of their future contracting needs within the project time frames and innovative procurement procedures.

In terms of its innovative purchasing actions, Barcelona will pilot the SMART SPP guidance in four different tendering procedures:

  • refurbishment of the ancient Greek theatre using LED technology
  • installation of LEDs in municipal vending machines, of which there are approximately 300
  • purchasing of high efficiency vehicles and machinery for the Parks and Gardens department
  • installation of charging points for electric vehicles - 150 charging points to be installed across the City (about 1 charging point per 100,000 inhabitants).

The groundwork for the early market engagement activities is currently being prepared by the Spanish SMART SPP partners, by gathering information about potential manufacturers and suppliers of the products and services needed. The work is due to start following the next project partner meeting taking place at the end of September.

Apart from the City of Barcelona, interest in the SMART SPP approach and purchasing activities has been shown by other Spanish administrations, who will have the opportunity to take part in the training seminar, taking place in Barcelona on 28 September (see Section 5 on Events below for more information).

For more information, please contact Helena Barraco from Barcelona City Council or Helena Estevan from the Ecoinstitut Barcelona.

LED street in Torres Vedras

The Municipality of Torres Vedras has inaugurated their first LED street under the EU-funded project PRO-EE project, which stands for Public Procurement boosts Energy Efficiency. The lighting system was produced by EnergiaViva, a national company, also involved in the SMART SPP project activities in Portugal.

The LED street in Torres Vedras is part of a growing number of similar initiatives in Portugal, whereby local governments are increasingly able to take advantage of the new and more efficient light emitting diode technologies. The municipalities of Barreiro, and Pombal already have their own LED street lighting installations, whilst these are in the planning stages for other municipalities, such as Cascais and Beja.

4. What's new? Upcoming work on SMART SPP

Draft guide on driving innovation in procurement to be piloted

stepping stonesTwo of the major outcomes of the SMART SPP project will be

  • a guide for public authorities on driving innovation through public procurement, focusing on greater engagement with the market before tendering, and
  • a tool for calculating LCC and CO2 emissions through procurement.

Draft versions of the guide and tool are currently being finalised, and will be tested by the SMART SPP partners during the pilot implementation phase, beginning in October. These draft versions will be available by mid-September online at

If you are interested in seeing the draft versions and providing comments please download them from the address above, and email your comments to

5. Events

SMART SPP Training Seminar
28 September 2009, Barcelona, Spain

The SMART SPP consortium invites public purchasers across Europe to join a one-day training seminar on how to drive sustainable innovations through early market engagement and pre-procurement, taking place on 28 September in Barcelona. Experts from the SMART SPP consortium will guide you through a common integrated approach that includes how to best use the included LCC and CO2-equivalent assessment tool in pre-procurement.


International e-CarTec Conference 2009
13-15 October 2009, Munich, Germany

This international conference will showcase numerous presentations on four key topics in the field of electric mobility. The topics featured include the technological challenges and the development of electric vehicles, energy storage, the provision of energy and distribution as well as mobility concepts for electric vehicles. Delegates will have the opportunity to network with experts, managers and political decision-makers and participate in discussions with the conference speakers. The eCarTec and Materialica Trade Fairs will be held alongside the conference.


Procura+ Seminar 2009 
22-23 October 2009, Zürich, Switzerland

The international Seminar will bring together experts working in the field of sustainable procurement to exchange on opportunities between public authority procurers and suppliers. The Procura+ Seminar will build on the conclusions of EcoProcura 2009, held in Reykjavik this March. It will focus on some of the key conclusions from the conference in Reykjavik, and how these can be taken further, including:

  • Harmonisation of sustainability criteria, including energy efficiency standards
  • Embedding life-cycle costing and assessing CO2 emissions in procurement processes
  • Learning about the market availability of highly energy-efficient products
  • Promoting low-emission new buildings and renovation


Sustainable Innovation 09: Towards a Low Carbon Innovation Revolution
26-27 October 2009, Farnham, United Kingdom

Sustainable Innovation 09 - Towards a Low Carbon Innovation Revolution is being organised by the Centre for Sustainable Design in the UK. The conference will address topics that are relevant for the SMART SPP project including market transformation, regional approaches, sustainable public procurement and innovation processes, as well as supply chain management, product-related carbon foot-printing, methodologies and case studies.


ECOMONDO - 13th International Trade Fair of Material & Energy Recovery & Sustainable Development
28-31 October 2009, Rimini, Italy

This annual event will feature various exhibitions in the field of sustainability and the environment industry. The expos will be centred on core topics and innovations in the field, such as recycling in the construction sector, technologies for the reclamation of contaminated sites, civil and industrial water recovery management systems, as well as sustainable innovation and new raw materials for an economy embracing environmental conservation. Furthermore, best practice examples of cities which have applied concepts of sustainability will be included. Participants will have the opportunity to network and exchange information with key people in the industry. 


6. Other News

World Electric Vehicle Summit in Stavanger, Norway

On 13 May Global to Local delivered a presentation on behalf of the SMART SPP project at the World Electric Vehicle Summit in Stavanger, Norway. The Summit included a number of presentations from organisations from around the world, as well as an exhibition of electric vehicles produced for business and private use.

The opportunities offered from using innovative sustainable procurement techniques were the focus of the presentation delivered by Global to Local, and how these can serve to bridge the gap between innovation and the purchase of innovative technologies.
Three key messages arose from the presentation, which were discussed by delegates:

  • That standard tendering procedures are not enough to successfully drive the uptake of innovative technologies
  • Both procurers and suppliers need to share the risks and benefits associatedwith these technologies
  • Pooling of resources is necessary to achieve uptake of the products which
    organisations need.

Supported by:
Intelligent Energy Europe
An initiative of:
Procura Plus campaign

Intelligent Energy Europe Municipality of Kolding  LNEG - Laboratório Nacional de Energia e Geologia Global to Local  Ecoinstitut Barcelona ICLEI European Secretariat Barcelona City Council  London Borough of Bromley  Cascais Energy Agency  Eastern Shires Purchasing Organisation German Federal Association of Eco-Counselling  Öko-Institut e.V.

© 2011 ICLEI Europe