Have you thought about how you can make your veterinary practice more Eco-Friendly? Well, this Wednesday is Global Recycling Day, and the BVNA have some tips on how you can make more environmentally savvy choices in the workplace.

But first, let’s recap rubbish management in the UK – Most household and business waste is sent to landfills where it may degrade and then absorbed into the soil. However, some of the waste is not biodegradable, and in veterinary medicine a lot of waste is incinerated. The process of degradation in landfill generates greenhouse gases like methane, and incineration isn’t innocent either; a lot of gases can be released into the atmosphere too, like Nitrous Dioxide which is similar to what is created when fossil fuels are burnt.

So it is obvious, the only way to deal with waste is to reduce it, reuse itand recycle it where we can – Let’s look at what you can do to help!

Eco-Friendly Reception:

  • Email invoices and receipts to clients
  • Set practice printers to print double-sided as a default
  • Don’t print patient histories for referrals, send them via PDF prior to appointments
  • Give clients their food and medications in a paper bag
  • Have a paper-only rubbish bin

Eco-Friendly Theatre:

  • Invest in a water purifier for sterilising/autoclave machines instead of buying bottles
  • Buy funky reusable scrub caps for surgery instead of disposable ones
  • Instead of plastic shoe covers, get some theatre designated shoes (like Crocs)
  • Change to syringes that contain less plastic (for example, BD Emerald syringes have 30% less plastic than other syringes)
  • Start making Ecobricks by filling up bottles with syringe packets

Eco-Friendly Wards:

  • Use powder laundry detergent instead of individually wrapped pods
  • Wipe down elizabethan collars where appropriate
  • Open up bigger tins of food for patients during the day instead of sachets
  • Recycle food sachet packets through the Mars Petcare® Recycling Programme

You can make a change right now – Why not make someone an Environmental Spokesperson and have them drive a fresh green initiative in your practice!