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NHS: Energy

Volume 488: debated on Monday 23 February 2009

To ask the Secretary of State for Health (1) what plans to reduce energy consumption in the NHS are in place; (256936)

(2) what target he has set for the reduction of energy consumption in the NHS.

Under the requirements of the Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs Climate Change Programme, the Department set mandatory energy/carbon efficiency targets on the national health service in England to:

reduce the level of primary energy consumption by 15 per cent. or 0.15 million tonnes carbon from March 2000 to March 2010;

achieve a target of 35-55 GigaJoules/100 cubic metres (cu.m) energy efficiency performance for the health care estate for all new capital developments and major redevelopments or refurbishments; and

achieve a target of 55-65 Gj/100 cubic metres (cu.m) for all existing facilities.

The Department monitors progress towards achievement using the Estates Returns Information Collection (ERIC) system and monitors progress towards the mandatory targets. Although significant progress was being made against the targets there remained scope for the NHS to maintain progress. To assist an Energy and Sustainability Capital Fund has been provided and is anticipated to generate significant carbon and revenue savings.

In January 2009, the newly formed NHS Sustainable Development Unit published their NHS Carbon Reduction Strategy, which supports the Government's Climate Change Act 2008 target of 80 per cent. greenhouse gas reduction by 2050 with 26 per cent. carbon dioxide reduction by 2020. It goes further by challenging the NHS to aim for an interim reduction of 10 per cent. from 2007 to 2015.

To ask the Secretary of State for Health what estimate he has made of the total amount of energy used by (a) his Department and (b) the NHS in each of the last five years. (257578)

The following table shows the total energy consumption for the Department in each of the last five years.

Total energy consumption (MWh)

2003-04

19,121

2004-05

19,824

2005-06

18,090

2006-07

16,176

2007-08

16,241

The following table shows the total energy consumption reported by the national health service in each of the last five years. The data relating to total energy consumption and occupied floor area have been extracted from the Department's Estates Returns Information Collection (ERIC) system.

Total energy consumption (MWh)

Occupied floor area (m2)

Average Energy Consumption (KWh/m2)

2003-04

12,765,382

25,813,941

494

2004-05

12,441,322

25,428,351

489

2005-06

12,566,507

25,529,693

492

2006-07

12,446,516

25,486,209

488

2007-08

12,702,494

26,331,121

482

The occupied floor area has increased by 517,180 m2 over this time period while total energy consumption has decreased by 62,888 MWh indicating an improvement in how energy is utilised within the NHS.