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Climate change: Our commitment to net zero

The challenge

Last November, our Governing Body identified climate change as a priority to be kept front and centre in all decision making. This led to the adoption of a strategic objective to “commission environmentally and socially sustainably to meet the health and wellbeing needs of the population now and in the future.”

Achieving this objective will help us realise our ambition of “improved wellness in our communities.” It will also ensure we support the NHS’ ambition to be carbon neutral by 2040, recognising that the NHS is responsible for around 40 per cent of England’s carbon footprint.

What we’re doing

We have made great progress since last November although there is still much to do. We have introduced agile working that allows staff to work from any location that suits them and meets the needs of their service. This has reduced travel costs and released money for patient care.

We have introduced a range of new medicines management policies, including switching to dry powder inhalers from hydrofluorocarbons which are powerful greenhouse gases. This recognises that inhalers contribute to three per cent of total NHS emissions. Click here to read more about out work on medicines, inhalers and waste.

We gained funding for carbon literacy training for 100 staff across Cheshire and Merseyside. This educated colleagues on climate change, carbon footprints and the implications for health. The training has given employees the confidence to carry out climate change work across the CCG.

A small army of staff have volunteered as climate change activists to share informed advice on subjects including:

  • Sustainable food production (e.g. growing vegetables on allotments)
  • Reducing food miles by shopping locally for local produce
  • Upcycling old furniture and clothes
  • Reducing our mileage as travellers – at home and at work.

Click here for more on our work to tackle climate change, which is a health emergency causing food shortages, suffering and illness.

How you can help

Try walking and cycling more. Also consider eating less meat – which would not only improve your health but also reduce pollution.

Use the free NHS App to order your repeat prescriptions – and only order what you need.

Remember: What’s better for you is better for the planet.

Want to know more?

Watch this video by Dr Gwydion Rhys, our climate change champion: (Embed video)

Email Bernadette Bailey, our climate change lead.