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  • Respiratory
  • Sustainability

Introduction to Global Heating and Ways to Benefit the Environment

Climate change is a global emergency. Greenhouse gases released into the atmosphere result in heat trapping, or otherwise referred to as global warming. Global warming is likely to have profound effects on environmental factors as well as human health.1

The UK has pledged to become carbon neutral by 2050, in line with the Paris Agreement (which set the goal to limit global warming to 1.5°C compared to pre-industrial levels).2 The NHS currently accounts of 4-5% of the total carbon emissions in England,3 and therefore there is a need to address its contribution to the UK greenhouse gas emission. In response, the NHS has set up a Long-Term Plan to become net zero by 2040, ahead of the Paris Agreement 2050 target.4

During the webinar, Dr Matt Sawyer provides background to the greenhouse gas effect, key contributors to greenhouse gas emissions and the impact of Fluorinated gases (F-gases) and pressurised metered dose inhalers (pMDIs) within these emissions. He goes onto map out ways primary care can tackle both the clinical and non-clinical greenhouse gas contributions from the sector, with the aim of achieving a net zero NHS by 2040.


1. World Health Organisation. Climate change and health. Available at: https://www.who.int/news-room/fact-sheets/detail/climate-change-and-health
2. The Climate Change Act 2008 (2050 Target Amendment) Order 2009. Available at: https://www.legislation.gov.uk/uksi/2019/1056/article/2/made
3. NHS England. Greener NHS campaign to tackle climate ‘health emergency’. January 2020. Available at: https://www.england.nhs.uk/2020/01/greener-nhs-campaign-to-tackle-climate-health-emergency/
4. Delivering a ‘Net Zero’ National Health Service. October 2020. Available at: https://www.england.nhs.uk/greenernhs/a-net-zero-nhs/

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  • Dr Matt Sawyer

    General Practitioner

    Read biography