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Sustainability Update – 1 year on

By January 7, 2022 Greenbay Vet News

In January 2021 we created an official sustainability policy for Greenbay Vets, here is an update 1 year on.

We had a number of things already in place:

  • Switching to a greener electricity tariff, and to more efficient LED lighting.
  • Recycling paper, tins, plastic, card, glass and batteries.
  • Moving towards paperless e.g. electronic receipts, lab results, pet reminders and insurance claims.
  • Making use of the ‘cycle to work’ scheme.
  • Learning how to help bees via the British Bee Veterinary Association.
  • Using refills, for e.g. hand soap, washing up liquid.
  • Purchasing Fair Trade tea and coffee for the staff room.
  • Re-using towels, newspaper and blankets in our kennels area.
  • Using paper dispensing bags and carrier bags.
  • Using reusable, fabric scrub hats.
  • Use of low flow anaesthesia.

So far in 2021 we have focused on the following areas:

  • Reducing waste -> unsubscribing from unwanted postal magazines/journals/promotions. Requesting electronic invoices from any companies still posting. Re-usable coffee cups purchased for the staff room, for when colleagues purchase take-out coffee.
  • Increasing recycling -> recycling bin added to ‘patient prep/kennels’ area. Reminder to the team of what can be recycled.
  • Reviewed suppliers of stationary, cleaning and catering products. Most paper products were already recycled or FSC approved. Some substitutions made e.g. black bin bags replaced with ‘The Green Sack’ company (made from recycled farm waste plastic), zero-plastic Sellotape.
  • We also replaced our old gas boiler at Torquay, to a more efficient condensing one.

Plans for 2022:

  • We would like to work out our carbon emissions and make a plan to reduce them where possible – we await with anticipation a carbon calculator for use in veterinary practices, which is being created by Vet Sustain.
  • 2021 was the last year that we will send out any Christmas cards, in 2022 we will make a donation to charity instead. We will continue to send sympathy cards, and are investigating the most sustainable option for this.
  • To continue to review suppliers and our waste management systems.
  • We would like to create some kind of habitat for pollinators at both sites – although we have limited space outside and no green space at either site, we hope some pots of bee-friendly flowers would help, so that is a project for the spring.

If you have any suggestions from your own workplace, please do let us know.

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