Information Systems for Environmental Sustainability

IT, Resource Productivity, Environmental Preservation, and the Fourth Industrial Revolution

Carbon Reduction Practices by UK Organizations

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The UK’s Carbon Trust appears to be effectively collaborating with UK organizations to reduce carbon emissions (universities, health organization, etc.). Here’s the latest example:

The Board of NHS North Yorkshire and York has today (Tuesday 23 March 2010) approved a Sustainable Development and Carbon Management Plan. This sets out how the PCT and North Yorkshire and York Community and Mental Health Services will tackle their responsibilities towards climate change. It outlines an overall reduction of carbon emissions of 25% by 2014 (based on 2008/9 measurements) which could save the organisation around £7.2million by then.

Working with the Carbon Trust, NHS North Yorkshire and York is already taking forward a number of building and IT-related projects that will contribute to a reduction in their overall carbon footprint. Now staff are being asked to make their contributions in two key areas. These include:

  1. Reduce waste, energy consumption and water in buildings
  2. Reduce carbon footprint by reducing level of travel

Staff recently participated in the launch of the Carbon Management Programme when they were invited to see how carbon-friendly their driving skills were on a special car simulator provided by the York-based Energy Saving Trust. The Driving Challenge encouraged road-users to think about their driving style and to adopt habits that will help them use less fuel on the road, saving them money and reducing their carbon emissions (pictures available – see notes to editors).

NHS North Yorkshire and York’s Sustainable Development and Carbon Management Plan follows the national strategy on reducing carbon within the NHS, which outlines the case for the NHS taking a lead in carbon reduction as the biggest employer in Europe. It also states there are real health threats from climate change and that reducing carbon emissions saves the NHS money and is cost-effective.

I’m not aware of such a systematic and effective collaboration between a U.S. not for profit and U.S. organizations with the goal of reducing carbon emissions.


Author: nigelpm

Associate Professor of Information Systems, Stephen M. Ross School of Business, University of Michigan - Helping organizations to navigate digital transformation.

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