The NHS aims to reduce its carbon emissions by 10% between 2009 and 2015. Reducing the amount of energy used in our hospitals and by our organisation is contributing to this goal to reduce climate change and protect our environment.
There is also a financial benefit to the NHS for doing this as it reduces our energy bill.
Nationally, the reduction in carbon emissions could save £180 million per year.
In partnership with the Carbon Trust, the Trust has identified key areas for intervention, with 17 key projects, delivering efficiency savings and sustainable carbon management.
Read our latest carbon reduction news here
Reducing energy consumption
By reducing our energy costs by 8% between 2008/9 and 2011/12, we have saved £195,934, the equivalent of 35 hip operations.
The Trust recovered or recycled 143.52 tonnes of waste, which is 5% of the total waste we produce.
Our total energy consumption fell during the
financial year, from 40,830 to 39,231 MWh. We do not generate any energy but we have made arrangements to purchase electricity generated from renewable sources.
Our measured greenhouse gas emissions increased by 0.832 tonnes because 2011/12 included business mileage, whilst the Trust’s electricity and gas emissions increased by 0.182 tonnes.
Our water consumption reduced by 15,092 cubic meters during the financial year. In 2011/12 we spent £364,082 on water.
Energy efficiency scheme
During 2011/12 our gross expenditure on the CRC Energy Efficiency Scheme was £196,800. The CRC Energy Efficiency Scheme is a mandatory scheme aimed at improving energy efficiency and cutting emissions in large public and private sector organisations.
Our organisation has an up-to-date Carbon Management Plan which is a good way to ensure that we fulfil our commitment to
conducting all aspects of our business with due consideration to sustainability, whilst providing high quality patient care. The NHS Carbon Reduction Strategy asks for all hospital trusts to approve such a plan.
The Trust launched a high-profile Trust-wide communications campaign on carbon reduction in the early summer of 2011 with the support of the Carbon Trust.
In November 2011, the Trust received an award from the Carbon Trust for reducing its carbon emissions and in recognition of our work in driving cost efficiencies to reduce the risk of climate change.
The Trust will also continue to work closely with the Carbon Trust to identify further carbon emissions reductions and savings opportunities for the future.
Reducing travel and improving air quality
The NHS places a substantial burden on the transport infrastructure, whether through patient, clinician or other business activity.This generates an impact on air quality and greenhouse gas emissions. It is therefore important that we consider what steps are appropriate to reduce or change travel patterns.
The Trust is challenged because it manages two hospital sites - the Cumberland Infirmary in Carlisle and West Cumberland Hospital in Whitehaven - which are 42 miles apart.
To reduce travel between the hospital sites, the Trust introduced a new video-conferencing service which has resulted in a 50 tonne carbon reduction in reduced travel in the financial year 2011/12.
The Resilence and Sustainability team also conducted a travel-to-work survey and introduced a new cycle-to-work scheme.
The scheme is part of the Government’s Green Travel Plan, to encourage employees to ride a bicycle to work and help reduce congestion and environmental pollution.
The scheme has resulted in a 50 tonne carbon reduction and also has benefits for staff in our health & wellbeing campaign and also because it has been included in the Trust’s salary sacrifice scheme.