Working to reduce our impact on the environment
Managing social, ethical and environmental issues in a way that grows value and helps the Trust, our patients and visitors be more sustainable is very important to us.
As part of our transport initiatives we have a well established travel plan through which we have undertaken a wide range of cycle friendly projects including the provision of substantial numbers of cycle stores, improved security through the provision of CCTV and changing facilities. We have also recently overhauled our staff parking scheme to encourage alternative travel modes.
Reducing our energy use
The Trust has an energy strategy which seeks to reduce energy consumption in the medium to long term by training staff in good practice in the use of energy; investing in maintenance and capital schemes to reduce energy usage.
The Trust is one of the largest local consumers of electricity and as our activity increases and the power demand from modern equipment rises we have seen continued pressure on our overall consumption. In response to this, we have signed a green energy contract so that 20% of our power is now provided from renewable sources including wind generation, solar, wave and hydroelectric schemes. We have also continued to convert all of our lighting to low energy LED systems and installed several voltage optimisation devices. Energy consumption is also now considered as part of our equipment selection processes and we continue to review the power usage of our building electrical installations such as our lifts and air conditioning system etc.
2010/11 saw the first benefits of this strategy with our energy consumption down 6.2% year on year and over 9% for March 2011 as against March 2010. We have set ourselves an ambitious target for a 15% reduction in our energy usage by April 2012.
Increasing our recycling
2010/11 saw increased emphasis placed on improving our recycling rates. Additional recycling streams for all forms of domestic waste have been established. We have set ourselves an ambitious target of 50% of all domestic waste being recycled during 2011/12, increasing to 70% from April 2012.
Waste improvement programme
We have been working closely with our facilities partner Bouygues Energies & Services to reduce waste across the hospital. The successful ‘Shred it, don’t blue bin it!’ has been implemented in A&E and a number of other areas across the hospital. Confidential waste is now shredded in each department, rather than using confidential bins. Disposing of non-shredded paper in the blue bin costs the Trust £500 per month, whereas to shred and recycle the paper costs just £5 per tonne.
We have installed recycling bins throughout the Trust meaning all departments can now recycle paper, plastics and even food - which is composted in our on site wormery!
Through our supply chain initiatives, we seek to ensure that the working conditions in our supply chain meet all recognised standards. We also seek to ensure that waste packaging and transportation miles are minimised. Over time we expect to be able to make substantial and cumulative improvements particularly on our upstream supply chains environmental impact.
Our Carbon Reduction Commitment
The Carbon Reduction Scheme is a mandatory carbon emissions trading scheme to cover all organisations using more than 6,000MWh of electricity per year (equivalent to an annual electricity bill of about £500,000). The Trust is one of the approximately 5,000 UK organisations that are covered by the scheme, along with supermarkets, banks, property management companies, government departments, hotel groups, food retail chains and local authorities. Each year, the scheme will require participating organisations to purchase and submit sufficient allowances to meet their annual emissions covered by the scheme. The CRC is central to the Government’s strategy for improving energy efficiency and reducing carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions in order to meet the legally binding targets for reducing greenhouse gas emissions established by the Climate Change Act 2008. During 2010/11 we reduced our energy emissions by over 400 tonnes.
Accountability to the local community
The Trust is committed to being accountable to its local community and the people we serve; the Chief Executive and Executive Directors regularly attend both Hounslow and Richmond Council’s Scrutiny Committees to answer the questions of local Councillors. Foundation Trust status in the future will formalise our accountability to the local community, our staff and stakeholders.
Working with our community
Throughout the year we have been grateful for the support of a number of local organisations, including Glaxosmithkline and Sky, who have very kindly helped to regenerate the grounds and gardens across the hospital site for the benefit of patients, visitors and staff.
We have also been closely involved with local schools and colleges, to give their students work experience and raise the profile of the NHS for their future careers.
Our thanks go out to all those who have supported these initiatives.