The Climate Emergency threatens our lives and the lives of all future generations, and failure to act at pace and scale means “missing a rapidly closing window to secure a liveable future”. (1) The climate emergency is therefore also a health emergency. (2)
The health sector accounts for almost 5% of global carbon emissions, (3) and the provision of care to the critically ill is resource intensive. As a representative of all those professionals working in critical care, as well as patients, relatives and loved ones, we recognise our responsibility to minimise the environmental impact of our work in order to save both our planet and patients. For this reason, the Intensive Care Society joins a growing number of medical (4) and other organisations in declaring a Climate and Ecological Emergency. (5)
As a Society, we advocate for the best interests of intensive care staff and patients, and it is clear that planetary health is a key pillar of population health. We want to ensure we represent the values of our members and the patients they care for, which is why we’ve made environmental sustainability a critical enabler for the successful delivery of our new strategy.
Chief Executive, Intensive Care Society
Environmental sustainability must be a core consideration of how we deliver care, not an afterthought. Embedding environmental governance within each critical care unit is paramount in line with the NHS’s commitment to reach net zero by 2045, and we aim to enable just that.
ICM Trainee and Sustainability Working Group Co-Chair, Intensive Care Society
These are matters of life and death. The time to act is now, and the Intensive Care Society is committed to doing so.
You can find out more about our Sustainability work and how you can help us build an environmentally sustainable intensive care at www.ics.ac.uk.