On background, listeners are aware that the US healthcare industry emits an enormous amount of GHG pollution, that hospitals are the largest contributor to industry emissions, that they are substantially energy in-efficient and that the industry’s emissions alone cause innumerable and unrelenting health harm - disproportionately impacting are Medicare seniors and Medicaid children. Despite these facts the healthcare industry on balance remains solidly uncommitted to decarbonizing. Finally, listeners are now likely well aware early this week the earth reached unprecedented temperatures and that last month was the warmest June globally in recorded history.
During this interview Ms. Roschnik begins by providing an overview of the International Hospital Federation’s mission, members and its recent foray into environmental sustainability, or reducing greenhouse gas emissions. She discusses related sustainability programming, including master classes and running a learning lab. She discusses the upcoming October meeting in Lisbon, training tools including a sustainability accelerator tool, recognizing and addressing carbon emissions from all three scopes, the economics of decarbonizing, US exemplars, sustainability interest by health insurance carriers and accrediting organizations, NHS’s related efforts, use of EPA’s Energy Star energy efficiency program, and the benefit of embedding or integrating sustainability in hospital planning and operations.
Ms. Sonia Roschnik is the Executive Director of the IHF’s Sustainability Centre in Geneva, Switzerland. She also currently serves on the Board of the Climate Action Accelerator and is an honorary member of the UK’s Faculty of Public Health. Ms. Roschnik worked previously as the International Climate Policy Director for the Centre from Health Care Without Harm. Previously still, she was Director of the NHS Sustainable Development Unit (2018–2020). Ms. Roschnik is the author of the global roadmap to decarbonize healthcare (2021) and worked in collaboration with the World Health Organization (WHO), United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC), and the UK presidency of the UN Climate Change Conference of the Parties (COP26. She holds a Master of Science degree in Systems Thinking and is a UK-registered occupational therapist.
The IHF is at: https://ihf-fih.org/.