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Each week, edie rounds up some of the best sustainability stories across five key pillars

Barclays' net-zero target and a battery storage boon: The sustainability success stories of the week

As part of our Mission Possible campaign, edie brings you this weekly round-up of five of the best sustainability success stories of the week from across the globe.

Reports suggest that concerns around food hygiene due to Covid-19 could increase plastic packaging intensity

Coronavirus and plastics: Are we headed back towards single-use?

As the global economy struggles with the pressures of Covid-19, some industry groups are using the need for more protective equipment as a means to lobby for the removal of charges and bans on single-use plastics. edie explores why that cannot be allowed to happen.

The council, hosted by the REA, has called for full reassurance that UK production, imports and transportation remain open

Calls for Government to secure biomass pipeline during coronavirus outbreak

Associations from the UK's biomass fuel supply chain have called for the UK Government to ensure the sector can continue to deliver low-carbon heating to households and business facilities that are still open and under increased pressure due to the coronavirus outbreak.

The commitment builds on Cornwall Council's plan to reach net-zero operational emissions within a decade. Image: Royal Cornwall NHS Hospital

Cornwall becomes first NHS region to set 2030 net-zero target

Cornwall and Isles of Scilly's sustainability and transformation partnership (STP), which includes all key NHS provisions across the region, has set a 2030 net-zero target in what it claims is a UK first.

Under the deals, British Gas Business will supply 100% renewable electricity. Image: Francis Tyers, CC BY 3.0 

'A landmark moment': NHS to boost renewable energy sourcing

More than 11% of the NHS's estate will be switched to 100% renewable electricity this spring, under new energy deals signed by its Property Services arm.

Returning Prime Minister Brosi Johnson will now turn his attention to 'getting Brexit done', despite also having a raft of green policy issues to deal with. Image: Chatham House (Flickr) https://www.flickr.com/photos/chathamhouse/30562517863

General Election result: Conservative landslide victory raises fresh concerns for green economy

The results are in and Boris Johnson's Conservative Party has won the 2019 General Election with an historic landslide majority, prompting fresh concerns about the strength of environmental regulations in the UK post-Brexit.

Images: UNClimateChange Flickr

America's Pledge and Europe's Green Deal: What happened on days 8 & 9 of COP25?

COP25 - the UN's annual two-week-long climate summit - has entered its second week in Madrid. Here, edie rounds up all the key news and views from the last few days of the event.

The thinktank is calling for new measures to reach net-zero at the current 2050 deadline without spiralling costs or harming UK competitiveness

Net-zero by 2025 'practically impossible' due to spiralling costs, report finds

Moving the UK's net-zero emission target forward 25 years is "practically impossible", according to new thinktank research which found that setting a net-zero target for 2025 would cost £200bn each year at a minimum - more than the NHS's annual budget.

Is embedding sustainability in higher education truly sustainable?

Focusing on reducing carbon footprint on your estate and research into future environmental challenges are very much a given now in higher education, argues Professor Jim Longhurst. But pushing the scope of the agenda to account for all students is an entirely different discussion.

Rhea has been with NHS Property Services, where she works as one half of a two-person CSR team, for a year

Meet edie's 30 Under 30 Class of 2019: Rhea Horlock, NHS Property Services

This series profiles the members of edie's 30 Under 30 - a nomination-based community of 30 hugely talented young sustainability and energy professionals who have already achieved great things or are showing fantastic promise. Next up: Rhea Horlock, CSR manager at NHS Property services.

In 2018, more than 200 million single-use plastic items were used across NHS England's catering operations. Image: NHS Forth Valley. 

NHS vows to halve single-use plastic from catering

NHS England has pledged to halve the number of plastic items it uses in catering operations each year, in a move which will remove 100 million single-use plastic items from circulation annually.

The report warns that climate change is already impacting farmers in the UK and Europe, as well as those further afield 

Climate change threatening security of UK's food and medicine supply, MPs warn

The UK's failure to tackle climate challenges in food supply chains overseas is risking national food security and the NHS is "not sufficiently resourced" to deal with global warming, a new report from MPs has warned.

In order for the savings to be realised, the report calls for the Government to enshrine a public sector emissions reduction target for 2030 in legislation.

Public sector 'missing out on £5.6bn in energy efficiency'

More than £375m in cost savings can be made each year if the public sector upgrades its infrastructure to more green technology, a Centrica Business Solutions report has found.

Luke began working in healthcare nine months ago, bringing his experience in sustainable transport, retail and education to the NHS

Meet edie's 30 Under 30 class of 2019: Luke Landers, University Hospitals Birmingham

This new series profiles the members of edie's 30 Under 30 - a nomination-based community of 30 hugely talented young sustainability and energy professionals who have already achieved great things or are showing fantastic promise. Next up: Luke Landers, energy and sustainability manager at University Hospitals Birmingham NHS Trust.

In May 2019, the Scottish Government announced plans to amend its Climate Change Bill and commit to a legally binding target of reaching net-zero greenhouse gas emissions by 2045

Civic and business leaders publish 12-point plan for Scotland to address climate emergency

A group of civic and business leaders, including representatives from Scottish Land & Estates, Changeworks and Scottish Renewables, has called on the Scottish Government to champion healthy diets, fix land use and target low-carbon vehicles and buildings to address the climate emergency.

The scheme will be rolled out to all staff across the Trust's nine hospitals

Manchester's NHS Foundation Trust launches gamification staff behaviour change scheme

Manchester University NHS Foundation Trust (MFT) has become the first NHS Trust to sign up to the JUMP employee engagement initiative, in a bid to encourage its 20,000+ employees to develop habits which improve the organisation's environmental impact while also boosting their own wellbeing.

The funding will be awarded on a competitive basis, to universities researching the health effects of climate change impacts

Government pledges £56m for university research into climate change health impacts

The Department for Health and Social Care is set to funnel up to £56m into projects researching the public health impacts of climate change and other environmental crises by 2025.

The 136-page deal includes several measures to make the NHS less carbon-intensive and more resource-efficient

Low-emission ambulances and LED lighting: The NHS Long Term Plan's key sustainability measures

As the UK Government unveils its highly-anticipated Long Term Plan for the NHS to improve the service over the coming decade, edie rounds up the key sustainability measures outlined in the document.

Mission Possible: Achieving a sustainable future for FOOD & DRINK MANUFACTURING

This brand-new sector insight report provides an end-to-end overview of the steps that organisations within Britain's food & drink manufacturing industry can take to achieve a sustainable future, today.

The RCP, which has seen membership reach 34,500 physicians in the UK, has also implemented new waste management processes to reduce its plastic waste and increase its recycling

Royal College of Physicians achieves Carbon Trust Standard certification

The Royal College of Physicians (RCP) has been recognised for recording a 30% reduction in its carbon footprint over a three-year period by becoming the first royal college to receive the Carbon Trust Standard certification.

World Water Week: Valuing our natural environment

We all 'appreciate' a babbling brook and beautiful rivers and oceans, but what is the value of our natural environment? World Water Week provides us all with the perfect opportunity to reflect on the importance of water stewardship, which is not only about doing the right thing, it's also about generating real business benefits as a result.

Heatwaves are known killers in the UK and the number of hot days is rising

UK 'woefully unprepared' for deadly heatwaves, warn MPs

The UK is "woefully unprepared" for deadly heatwaves, according to a cross-party committee of MPs, with the government ignoring warnings from its official climate change adviser.

It is estimated that NHS acute trusts spend around £500m on energy each year

Report: NHS could save £130m by updating energy systems

The NHS could save at least £130m every year by updating old energy systems with battery storage, onsite low-carbon generation and energy efficiency measures.

As a nation, health costs associated with vehicle emissions reach £6bn annually

Report: Switching to EVs could save £325m in health costs

If every new car in 2019 were electric it would help save more than £325m in health costs in the first year, according to new analysis which found that the health impact costs of diesel cars are far higher than petrol or electric counterparts.

The path to public-sector sustainability is paved with good intentions

As part of edie's latest sector insight report, the Carbon Trust's managing director for programmes and cities Richard Rugg charts the progress being made across the sector towards a sustainable future.

The report, sponsored by Centrica Business Solutions, investigates the key drivers, challenges and opportunities facing public-sector sustainability professionals

Public-sector sustainability professionals braced for negative impacts of Brexit

Almost three-quarters of sustainability professionals working within public sector organisations believe the UK's impending departure from the European Union (EU) will hinder the delivery of their strategies and projects, according to a new report launched by edie today (28 February).

Ministers are urged to meet with leading Trusts to establish how best practice can be shared nationally

Government could 'save NHS millions' through sustainability backing

The NHS could free up significant funds for front-line services if the Government lends its support to Trusts to develop low-carbon measures.

The new energy and heating infrastructure will reduce carbon emissions at the Trust by around 10,000 tonnes annually

In practice: Oxford University Hospitals' money-saving CHP retrofit

Oxford University Hospitals benefited from a finance procurement system that partnered the Trust with companies that could replace aging heat and power infrastructure with a combined heat and power system that would generate massive economic savings.

Deep breath: change the conversation

Air quality in our towns and cities is a critical issue but action and progress will be sorely limited unless we grasp the challenge of awareness, behaviour and pro-active communications.


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