Homerton University Hospital NHS Foundation Trust was this week officially presented with The Planet Mark™ Certificate in recognition of its commitment to year-on-year progress in sustainability.
The award means Homerton University Hospital is the first NHS Trust to achieve The Planet Mark™ and the first hospital in the world to be accredited by the sustainability programme.
Homerton has been working with energy and sustainability consultancy Low Carbon Europe (LCE), an Associate Partner of The Planet Mark™, since 2013 to manage its environmental impacts. However, The Planet Mark™ award marks the first time the NHS Trust has measured and reported its carbon footprint.
Analysis of Homerton Hospital’s environmental impacts show the relative carbon footprint in year ending March 2017 was 1.7 tCO2e per employee and the total carbon footprint was 5,885 tCO2e. The report included emissions from energy use in the building (natural gas and purchased electricity), water and fleet. Electricity emissions accounted for 72.6% of total emissions followed by natural gas, which accounted for 25.7%.
Achieving The Planet Mark™ Certification means Homerton has shown good practice in sustainability including:
• measuring its carbon emissions from electricity gas, water and fleet
• setting a 5% carbon reduction target for its 2017-18 reporting period
• investing in the Eden Project to support education on climate change
• storing 260 tCO2e by protecting one acre of endangered rainforest through the charity Cool Earth
• committing to engage employees and suppliers to drive improvements.
As an Associate Partner of The Planet Mark™ programme, LCE was responsible for measuring Homerton Hospital’s carbon footprint and delivering The Planet Mark™ carbon footprint report.
The Planet Mark™ founder Steve Malkin said: “The Trust should be congratulated for what it has achieved in recent years to reduce its carbon footprint. It continues to look at new ways to become more sustainable and to reduce carbon emissions further. We are delighted to recognise Homerton as the first hospital to receive our accreditation.”
Homerton Director of Estates Chris Forster said: “Working with our partners Low Carbon Europe, and with the full support of our Trust Board, we have been developing our sustainable management plan and action plan to reduce emissions in the hospital and our community units. We have just appointed a new environment and sustainability manager to take this work forward as we seek other new initiatives to enable us to become energy efficient.”
The Planet Mark™ was founded in 2013 with the iconic Eden Project in Cornwall, UK, and is awarded to businesses, properties, new developments and projects that are committed to reducing their carbon emissions.
Since it launched, The Planet Mark™ has certified over 100 organisations. In 2016, it helped holders of The Planet Mark™ cut their average carbon emissions by 10% per employee.
Holders of The Planet Mark™ have a minimum requirement to reduce their carbon emissions by 2.5% per year to retain the award.