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Going greener could save £150m for NHS

Carbon reduction specialist, Sustain, says its latest research indicates that the NHS could save between £100m and £150m annually by cutting its utility bills.

Using ERIC data, Sustain analysed the utilities spend in the NHS in England, and found the NHS spends £500m annually on energy and water. While ‘the average’ NHS Trust spends £1.3 m on energy, it says many could potentially reduce this ‘by at least £250,000’.

Matt Fulford, the company’s head of Low Carbon Buildings, said: “Even the more conservative £100m saving across the NHS could pay for 12,260 heart bypass operations or the treatment of 21,600 stroke patients. The kinds of measures Trusts could easily adopt are tried and tested steps been proven to work, including changing lamps in existing light fittings, ensuring existing heating systems are running well, and temperature settings are in place to reduce running time, and insulating buildings and boiler rooms.”

Sustaincollected ERIC data on 389 NHS Trusts, and, for the 185 NHS Trusts which fall under the Carbon Reduction Commitment scheme (CRC), crossreferenced it against the latest returns to check for consistency.

Each Trust’s energy and water spend was benchmarked against both Sustain’s internal benchmarks, and benchmarks from the Carbon Trust and CIBSE.