“We must now take the lead” – Sustainable healthcare is vital for action on climate change

9 May 2022

The Royal Australasian College of Physicians (RACP) says sustainability efforts within Australia’s health system is a significant factor in tackling climate change. 

This is a key topic in RACP’s Congress 2022, which features addresses by:

  • Anjali Sharma – Climate activist and lead litigant in a Federal Court class action against the Federal Government and Minister for the Environment, Sussan Ley

  • Ashjayeen Sharif – An 18-year-old student at the University of Melbourne who ran a campaign in 2021 nominating himself for AGL’s Board of Executives.

According to the RACP’s report – Climate Change and Australia’s Healthcare Systems –healthcare accounts for about 4.4% of net emissions globally. Australia’s health system makes up approximately 7% of the country’s total carbon emissions alone, equivalent to the emissions of South Australia.

RACP President Professor John Wilson says, “Climate change is the greatest threat to our future health system in Australia. 

“Action from the international community on climate change and the recent IPCC report drive home the need for us to take stronger action here in Australia.

“As part of this, Australia’s health system must now take the lead. We know that efforts to reduce emissions through renewable energy, and decrease waste generated by items such as PPE with sustainable supply chains are needed to drastically shrink emissions by the sector.”

Climate activist Anjali Sharma says that action, not just words, is vital to climate action. 

“I want to feel a sense of safety, a sense of hope, a sense of harmony, when I think about my future. I want more than just empty words and promises, and I want our government to make decisions on the climate like they’ll have to live with the impacts for decades to come.”

You can find out more about the RACP Congress 2022 at: https://event.racpevents.edu.au/racp-congress-2022/

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