The NHS-wide ambition to become the world’s first healthcare system to reach net zero carbon emissions, moved a step closer to reality in Leicester, Leicestershire and Rutland today, as the local NHS pledged its support in its new Green Plan.

The LLR ICS (Integrated Care System) Green Plan sets out a collective vision and the actions that it will take over the next three years, to support national and regional NHS targets for carbon reduction; prioritising interventions which simultaneously improve patient care and community wellbeing while tackling climate change and broader sustainability issues across LLR. The Plan also sets out collaborative efforts by ICS members and LLR partners to achieve desired outcomes in a cost-effective and efficient manner.

Andy Williams, Chief Executive of the LLR ICS, said: “Climate change threatens the very foundations of good health, with direct and immediate consequences for our patients, the public and the NHS across LLR.

“Sustainability in healthcare is changing and we are committed to having a positive impact on both the planet and our local communities. The opportunities we have are diverse and will support us to reduce health inequalities and improve the health of our local population.

“For example, by reducing air pollution we can reduce respiratory disease and by working with local suppliers and enabling and encouraging green travel we can improve environmental impacts and help reduce carbon emissions across LLR.

“The ICS is intended to help the NHS support broader social and economic development and our new Green Plan places emphasis on the collaborative actions required to deliver desired outcomes and leveraging collective efforts to achieve benefits for the community and our local environment.”

Michael Simpson, Director of Estates, Facilities and Sustainability and the Chair of the ICS Green Board, added: “The importance of this agenda cannot be underestimated. We feel the plan is realistic based on resources and availability of finances to invest.  LLR has already been recognised nationally for its sustainable approach to transport and is now focused on delivering the plan which hits many disciplines and cannot be associated with just estates and facilities, it is so much more.

“The plan is a key enabler in driving cleaner air and quality of life overall for the communities in and around LLR.  We are excited to be launching this and I would like to personally thank all stakeholders and partners across the region for their ongoing support.”

The LLR ICS Green Plan addresses wider sustainability priorities including carbon emissions, waste, elimination of single use plastic, travel and air pollution, site greening for patient and staff wellbeing, sustainable models of care across the region and collective efforts to reduce the impacts of medical processes (particularly anaesthetics) and the use of sustainable medicines, and sustainable procurement. It is built upon the foundations of the existing UHL (University Hospitals of Leicester NHS Trust) and LPT (Leicestershire Partnership NHS Trust) Green Plans.

For further information and to view the LLR ICS Green Plan visit ‘The Green Space’ our dedicated webpage for the Green Plan.