At UCLH we continue to make progress in implementing change to improve the environmental cost and social impact of our activities. This is essential not just for the wider social benefits these changes bring but also in supporting the Trust to maintain its secure financial position.
UCLH is working hard to achieve our Carbon reduction targets by improving the efficiency of energy use in the buildings estate, reducing water and waste.
UCLH has already met its 2015 target of reducing carbon emissions by 10 per cent (per patient contact), and we are now working hard to cut emissions by more than 28 per cent against our 2007/08 baseline. This represents a target of 22539 tCO2e (absolute tonnes of carbon dioxide equivalent) to be achieved by 2020. Currently we are short of that target, with absolute emissions of 26381 tCO2e.
UCLH have several Carbon Reduction targets on a 2007/08 baseline:
10% by 2015
28% by 2020
80% by 2050
Further challenges lie ahead to tackle emissions arising from travel, transport and particularly procurement of the goods and services we buy in order to meet the much more stretching 2020 reduction target representing a 28% reduction in emissions. Procurement at UCLH is undergoing a variety of strategic changes which will result in further changes to support the sustainability agenda in line with the trust’s overall objectives.
To make progress against these targets UCLH has in place a board approved Carbon Reduction and Sustainable Development Policy, and a Waste Management Policy. A Sustainability Steering Group is in place with key senior members from UCLH to provide direction, decision making and communication within the sphere of sustainability.
Over recent years, the estate has increased in size dealt with progressively more patient numbers and we are making good progress in reducing energy from buildings when viewed on a comparative, normalised basis. Such projects include those relating to metering, improved operational management of buildings, lighting and heating systems.
Sustainability is at the forefront of our construction programmes too. The MacMillan Cancer Centre was awarded a BREEAM excellent rating. This building features sophisticated lighting controls, automated blinds, efficient plant and equipment, water management systems, and secure bike storage facilities.
Across UCLH, we are raising the bar on responsible waste management with some significant improvements during the past year. Several of our hospitals have introduced an offensive waste stream, bringing down the cost and carbon footprint of our clinical waste disposal. We have also increased our recycling figures, and are working closely with our waste contractors to ensure that we are recycling more of our waste. Each hospital site now has battery recycling facilities, and Eastman Dental Hospital and The Heart Hospital also segregate food waste from preparation areas to send to food waste collection schemes. We have been engaged in rolling out waste awareness days at each of our hospitals and sites to improve awareness and participation in segregation and recycling. This has been a factor in improved waste performance during the year.
In order to combine health with low carbon travel, UCLH runs a pedometer challenge which pits teams of staff against each other in terms of miles walked. We actively signpost staff to the London Borough of Camden ‘Stravel' scheme which rewards cyclists and runners in the Camden Borough with prizes and discount at shops.
We actively collaborate with other NHS Trusts to reduce the impact and cost of energy, waste and transport. We are a leading member of the Camden Climate Change Alliance. This year we have actively worked with the Sustainable Development Unit to help shape their future strategy, and have been an active partner in contributing to the success of the NHS sustainability day.