Special to 1812Blockhouse (emphasis added)
OhioHealth was celebrated by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) at the 2022 United Nations Climate Change Conference (COP27) on November 10 for pledging ongoing action to decarbonize the health care sector and make health care facilities more resilient to the effects of climate change.
“With this pledge we are aiming to reduce our greenhouse gas emissions by 50 percent by 2030 and achieving zero emissions by 2050,” said Steve Markovich, MD, President and CEO, OhioHealth. “This is a critical step in reducing our environmental footprint and mitigating the public health threat posed by the effects of climate change.”
The HHS Office of Climate Change and Health Equity (OCCHE), part of the Office of the Assistant Secretary for Health, developed the White House/HHS Health Sector Climate Pledge to help focus industry response to climate challenges. In addition to reducing their carbon footprint, signatories also commit to producing detailed plans to prepare their facilities for both chronic and acute catastrophic climate impacts.
A September 2021 consensus statement from more than 200 medical journals named climate change the number one threat to global public health. It exposes millions of people in the United States to harm every year—with disproportionate impacts on communities that are often already the victims of longstanding discrimination. The healthcare sector also contributes to climate change, accounting for approximately 8.5 percent of U.S. domestic emissions.
“We want to help lead the way in achieving a sustainable and equitable community,” Chief Administrative Officer and Executive Co-Sponsor of Sustainability, Johnni Beckel, said, “Before signing the pledge, we’ve made significant progress in reducing our energy consumption, diverting waste from the landfill, developing sustainable transportation goals, creating standards for green buildings, and focusing on responsible purchasing, and we know this is just the beginning.”
We are working alongside over 1,080 federal and private sector hospitals across the country to meet these critical climate goals.
Based in Columbus, Ohio, OhioHealth is a nationally recognized, not-for-profit, charitable, healthcare outreach of the United Methodist Church.
Serving its communities since 1891, it is a family of 35,000 associates, physicians and volunteers, and a network of 12 hospitals, 200+ ambulatory sites, hospice, home-health, medical equipment and other health services spanning a 47-county area. It has been recognized by FORTUNE as one of the “100 Best Companies to Work For” 15 times since 2007. OhioHealth hospitals include OhioHealth Mansfield Hospital and OhioHealth Shelby Hospital.