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23
Sep

Labour outlines plans for an NHS Green New Deal


Speaking at the annual conference of the Labour Party, Shadow Health Minister, Jonathan Ashworth has made a series of pledges that he says will “rebuild our NHS.” 

 

Labour will also declare a climate emergency across the NHS and introduce the NHS Sustainability and Clean Air programme. The aim is to help the NHS meet a net zero carbon emissions target and become the greenest health service in the world.

 

The NHS is still a significant contributor of carbon emissions in the UK – 27 million tonnes per year, which is around 6.3% of the carbon footprint in England. Labour initiatives will include the installation of more than 150,000 solar panels to save on the cost of energy; moving to low-emission vehicles; investing in efficient energy systems for NHS buildings in order to save 1.7 million tonnes of CO2 emissions; establishing Clean Air Zones around NHS buildings and planting one million trees across the NHS estate to save 11,500 tonnes of carbon per year and create green space for all.

 

Mr Ashworth also promised to rebuild hospitals and health centres and invest in technology, properly funded from the public purse, not PFI. Cuts and closures will be halted and decisions reviewed based on clinical impact. Prescription charges will be abolished and more funding will be available for training, learning & development, including reinstating the training bursary for nurses and midwives.

 

He also pledged more support for mental health - particularly children’s - addiction recovery services, obesity and tackling health inequalities.

 

The full speech is available on YouTube - click here to be redirected.

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