Reducing our carbon footprint in our Spanish hospitals

05 June 2018 . Spain

At Bupa, we recognise that climate change is about more than keeping our planet healthy – it’s about keeping our people healthy too. We manage our environmental impact closely and play an active part in promoting positive environmental practices. 

That’s why earlier this year, Sanitas Hospitales, our hospital business in Spain, joined the Carbon Footprint Registry – a programme run by the Ministry of Agriculture and Fisheries, Food and Environment. The programme asks organisations to commit to measuring, reducing and compensating for their carbon footprints.

On joining the programme, Monica Martin Decorpas, Department of Management Systems of Sanitas Hospitales, said: “We are very excited to be joining the Carbon Footprint Registry. Sanitas Hospitales is committed to reducing our carbon footprint. Joining the Registry will ensure that we continue to measure and evaluate our efforts to the high standard set by the programme.”

Sanitas Hospitales has actively managed its environmental impact since 2013, when university hospitals Sanitas La Moraleja and La Zarzuela began measuring their carbon emissions using the standard practice endorsed by the Spanish government. La Moraleja and La Zarzuela were later joined by other Sanitas hospitals and medical centres throughout Spain.   

By closely monitoring its carbon emissions, Sanitas Hospitales has reduced its carbon footprint by 8.1% in the last 5 years. One of the ways to achieve this reduction is by implementing an Energy Management System certified according ISO 50001. The system includes the promotion of initiatives designed to reduce energy consumption and minimise negative impact on the environment.

Sanitas Hospitales is commited to continuously improvement and has been using 100% renewable power since 2010, other initiatives implemented include the gradual substitution of the fleet by electric cars, which has already reduce the CO2e emissions by 20%.

In addition to measuring and reducing carbon emissions, the Carbon Footprint Registry programme also involves a commitment to compensation – making a positive impact on the environment to offset the impact of carbon emissions. As part of this, Sanitas La Moraleja and La Zarzuela hospitals are participating in a reforestation project in the Sierra de Gredos, one of the most extensive mountain ranges in central Spain. The project will see 2701 trees planted across the range, one for each child born in the hospitals in 2016.

Martin Decorpas said: “We are very proud of the positive impact that our hospitals are making. We are sure that this project will improve the quality of the air and help people live longer, healthier and happier lives."

We’re actively improving our impact on the environment across other parts of Bupa, too. In the UK, Spain, Poland and Denmark, we’ve converted to 100% renewable power across all our sites and, globally, renewable energy sources now account 50% of our supply. We’ve invested in our own renewable generation, too, with on-site solar PV panels now contributing 4% of our global electricity use.