Blog Post

FAR Council Issues Final Rule on Sustainable Products & Services

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As part of the Biden administration’s effort to use federal purchasing power to tackle climate change, the FAR Council issued a final rule, effective May 22, 2024, requiring agencies to procure “sustainable products and services,” to the “maximum extent practicable.” The “sustainable products and services” rule is just one of several proposed rules and directives intended to compel the government and government contractors to do business in a more environmentally sustainable way.

Under the final rule, the procurement of sustainable products and services is considered “practicable” if the products or services meet “reasonable performance requirements” and can be acquired “competitively within a reasonable performance schedule” and at “a reasonable price.” Federal Acquisition Regulation (“FAR”) 23.103(a)(1). To determine whether the price is reasonable, the regulation directs agencies to “consider whether the product is cost-effective over the life of the product.” FAR 23.103(a)(2). If an agency determines that it is not practicable to procure sustainable products or services, the contracting officer must document the reason in writing in the contract file. FAR 23.103(a)(2).

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