Keeping products and materials in use or recovering them effectively at the end-of-use

Your city government may purchase products and assets that are designed to be circular. But the public procurement process will only be fully circular if the loop is closed at the end of the contracting period. Your city government can ensure that the products and materials you have procured are effectively reused, remade, or recovered at the end of their functional life. Additionally, your city government can promote repair, remanufacturing, and refurbishing services as well as implement systems and processes, such as take-back schemes, to close the loop.

Questions to consider:

  • What can you do with the products and assets owned by the municipality at the end of the contracting period?

  • How are you managing the end-of-use phase of the products and assets owned by your municipality?

  • Who is responsible for ensuring that products and assets owned by the city government are kept in use?

  • Can you ensure that products are sent back to your supplier if procured through a take-back scheme?


1) Post-use IT equipment donated by public and private institutions is being remanufactured by the Computer Reconditioning Centre (CRC) in the City of Belo Horizonte in Brazil. The city has restored 7,000 post-use IT products and diverted 165,000kg from landfill since the CRC was launched in 2008. The refurbished equipment goes on to support over 300 ‘digital inclusion sites’, where citizens have free access to computers and the internet, as well as varied training opportunities in digital literacy.

2) When two municipal buildings reached the end of their functional life, Hjørring Municipality procured a demolition service which aimed to recover and recycle the bricks. Following a feasibility study and thorough screening of the buildings for toxic substances, the requirements for dismantling bricks were developed in collaboration with the municipal waste disposal company who agreed to purchase the reclaimed bricks. Around 16,000 bricks, enough to build an average-sized single-family house, were reclaimed from the two buildings. The project has resulted in total savings of 10,950 kg of CO₂. Based on the positive results of this pilot, Hjørring Municipality will continue to include requirements for the recycling of bricks from municipal buildings wherever possible, and will also explore how to incorporate recycling criteria for other building materials.

3) To recover the construction materials of 1,700 buildings that are deemed as uninhabitable, the City of Pittsburgh published a Deconstruction Executive Order in April 2021. The City administration is considering waste diversion options and exploring purchasing opportunities to sustain demand for reused building materials.

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