Oregon Public Broadcasting (Portland, Or.), May 11, 2006


[Rachel's introduction: In the local media, Portland's new precautionary purchasing policy is called "the most comprehensive in the country."]

By Ley Garnett

PORTLAND, OR -- Multnomah County and the city of Portland adopted a policy this week to purchase the least environmentally harmful products for government use.

The practice, called a "toxics reduction strategy," was compiled by the Sustainable Development Commission of Portland and the Oregon Center for Environmental Health.

Center director Jane Harris says simply using unbleached paper helps the environment.

Jane Harris: "We have a superfund site running through the heart of our city that's contaminated, and a lot of that contamination is coming from industrial activities like paper mills. By choosing unbleached paper we can begin to use market forces to change that. Same with organic food and sustainably raised meats."

Harris says the city and county now have the most comprehensive toxics reduction strategy in the country.

Copyright Copyright 2006, OPB