What is sustainability?
The Oregon Sustainability Act
defines "sustainability" as using, developing and protecting resources in a manner that enables people to meet current needs and provides that future generations can also meet future needs from the joint perspective of environmental, economic and community objectives (ORS 184.421)
Sustainability in state government
With over 100 state agencies and more than 40,000 employees, the state government's sustainability efforts can significantly influence the efficient use of energy and water, promote alternative transportation, reduce waste, promote the purchase and use of more sustainable materials and foster equity and inclusion, among other topics. These efforts can also help address the challenges of climate change, including reducing greenhouse gas emissions from state operations and consumption, and preparing to be resilient to a climate that is already changing. Several agencies have already prepared sustainability plans
and developed programs and initiatives to address various aspects of sustainability.
Department of Administrative Services' role
The Department of Administrative Services (DAS) leads state government by providing an array of services that include budget development, procurement, human resources, IT support, surplus property management and many others.
DAS acts as the main vehicle for realizing the Governor's executive goals, and for setting statewide policy. It serves as state government's primary resource in working towards more sustainable practices. With this central role in state government, DAS sustainability is focused on the effects of DAS' internal operations, and the delivery of external services and statewide policy across the enterprise. These efforts focus on management of the state's real and personal property assets, technology and the procurement of goods used by agencies to deliver services to Oregonians.
The agency's internal sustainability efforts are guided by a 2018 Sustainability Plan. They also include an active facilities program (energy and greenhouse gas management, water conservation and waste reduction), fleet management focused on fuel efficiency and emissions reductions, integrating sustainability into construction projects and real estate decisions and strategic sustainability-oriented procurement decisions. The staff-driven DAS Sustainability Team advises and supports the agency's sustainability efforts.