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Pharmaceutical Sector Contributes to

29th November 2022

The report “Supporting the era of green medicines in the UK” emphasises that, although the UK may take the lead in advancing sustainability for the pharmaceuticals sector, global action is also necessary to achieve effective results.
The NHS’s impact on the industries carbon output is up for some debate and varies depending on who is conducting each study. However, it has been established that the pharmaceuticals overall carbon footprint accounts for 12% to 35% of the whole healthcare sector. Even while they have pledged to help achieve net zero objectives, 70-90% of pharmaceutical firms’ emissions are largely out of their immediate influence.
According to recent research, the worldwide carbon footprint of the healthcare industry accounts for 4.4% of all emissions, with medicines making up a significant portion of this.
Head of the Association of the British Pharmaceutical Industry ABPI, Richard Torbett, commented that “sustainability is a massive and growing part of pharmaceutical companies’ work. We see environmental action being taken by member companies across the world – from investing in renewable energy to low-carbon inhalers to net-zero buildings.”
“It’s crucial that companies, Government, and the NHS work together to solve [the key challenges] to accelerate progress.”
Pushing for net zero, maintaining safety, upholding regulatory standards, and the fundamental notion that healthcare systems overwhelmingly do not reward sustainability are just a few of the big issues listed in the report.
Chief executive of the Office of Health Economics who contributed to constructing the report, Graham Cookson, said that “healthcare has a significant impact on the environment, and it is time that this is recognised in the decision-making process. Without better structures for decision-making, the market will continue to generate myopic incentives for innovation with little regard for the environmental impact.”

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