Osler Health and the environment
As a medical practice, ‘caring’ is at the heart of what we do every day. We believe that caring for people not only means supporting their physical and mental wellbeing, but also as an organization we have an obligation to care for the world around us. The healthcare industry contributes 5% of global greenhouse gas. As an organization rooted in an ethical approach, we believe we need to set an example of how medical companies can affect change.
Carbon dioxide, or CO2, is the most important greenhouse gas driving climate change. We collaborated with the globally renown environmental agency, Climate Partners located in Munich, Germany to help identify our CO2 emissions. Their vision is to enable a world where climate action is embedded into corporate activity. Our aim was simple; for Osler Health International to achieve net-zero carbon emissions by the end of 2022.
And we have.
Climate Partners and Osler Health
With Climate Partners’ guidance we collaborated to:
- calculate our existing carbon emissions
- implement plans to reduce our emissions where possible, and
- to offset the unabated emissions which we cannot avoid.
We set targets, introduced new infrastructures, amended our clinic/office practices and brought the whole Osler team on the ‘green journey’. Examples of this include our paperless processes (invoices and reports are send digitally), recycling bins throughout the clinics and we now buy goods and services from like-minded environmentally friendly companies whenever possible. This expectation setting is part of the change we aim to make within the healthcare industry in Singapore.
Of course, there are some areas where we simply cannot avoid creating carbon emissions. An example of this may be our medical grade refrigeration for medication and vaccines, in these instances we have calculated our emissions and have purchased carbon off-setting.
Osler's Carbon Offset Programme – stopping plastic waste entering the ocean
We are delighted to confirm our contribution to a certified international carbon offset project to help stop plastic entering the ocean.
The ocean is so important, it acts as a “buffer” that protects our atmosphere from seeing the full effects of climate change. Plastics consistently make up 80% of all marine debris studied. There may now be around 5.25 trillion macro and microplastic pieces floating in the open ocean. 100,000 marine mammals and turtles and 1 million sea birds are killed by marine plastic pollution annually.
Through purchasing into this project, not only have we offset 25,450kg of CO2, we support local initiatives aimed at arresting ocean warming, overfishing, pollutants and waste that endanger this balancing function. Developing countries often lack infrastructure for proper waste disposal and add to the problem. This carbon offsetting project helps reduce waste entering the ocean and helps provide local jobs.