Carbon reduction

The NHS has been working to reduce its carbon footprint for many years and has been tracking progress since 2008 when the Climate Change Act was announced. A carbon Reduction Strategy for the NHS was published in January 2009; a global first, which provided an NHS wide carbon footprint. This Strategy covered all areas of NHS influence, including energy, travel and procurement. As 65% of the footprint relates to products used in the delivery of services, the NHS approach has included all emissions wherever feasible. 

The NHS publishes regular updates to the carbon footprint, the latest of these demonstrating an 18% reduction between 2007 and 2017. Since then, the government has declared a climate emergency and updated the Climate Change Act, seeking to achieve zero carbon by 2050. 

Achieving zero carbon for the health and care sector will require both delivery of the Long Term Plan targets and wider action to reduce carbon emissions across the supply chain. 

Whilst further analysis is underway to identify the level of change needed for the NHS to meet the Climate Change Act targets and deliver zero carbon. The Long Term Plan outlines the first steps required to achieve significant carbon reductions. This includes ensuring a Green estate by investing in LED lighting, switching to renewable energy and ensuring all trusts follow best practice efficiency standards

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