Sustainability is meeting the needs of the present without compromising the ability of future generations to meet their own needs. It requires the reconciliation of environmental, social equity and economic demands - also referred to as the "three pillars" of sustainability or (the 3 Es).¹
Sustainability is important to making sure that we have and will continue to have the water, materials, and resources to protect human health and our environment.²
UCLA Health is committed to providing the best quality healthcare with the least impact to the environment. This commitment extends from our mission to heal humankind one patient at a time.
We have been involved in green practices for many years. Recently, a more comprehensive and coordinated effort was established with the UCLA Health Sustainability Program. A fulltime sustainability manager is dedicated to ensuring the success of this program.
Many aspects that may affect the environment are considered in our operations. This involves waste reduction and recycling, sustainable food services, water and energy conservation, and many others.
Our efforts over the past several years have reduced millions of gallons of water from being wasted, avoided over 6 million pounds of waste from going to the landfill, and have helped support local farmers by purchasing locally grown food for our patients, visitors and staff.
Collaborations with other medical centers in California and around the country have greatly impacted the environment in a positive way. This is done by sharing best practices and friendly competitions. Organizations such as Practice Greenhealth have made it easier to establish relationships with other organizations in order to help sustainability in health care grow. The Healthier Hospitals Initiative (HHI) is an example of this collaboration. We have committed to many challenges under HHI and hope to continue to make significant strides on improving the environment.
Through our sustainability efforts, we will help improve the environment to benefit the health of our patients, visitors, staff, and our community.