National recognition for sustainability stars at Linnaeus
The environmental efforts of Zoë Halfacree and Willows Veterinary Centre and Referral Service have been recognised with two wins at the Veterinary Green Awards. The awards ceremony, which was attended by more than 600 delegates, took place during The Webinar Vet’s Virtual Congress 2023.
Zoë, a Soft Tissue Surgeon at Linnaeus-owned Davies Veterinary Specialists in Hertfordshire, was awarded Green Veterinary Individual of the Year. Zoë volunteers as a director at sustainability group Vet Sustain and was recently appointed to Linnaeus’s clinical board as a subject matter expert on sustainability. A key focus for Zoë is the use of surgical textiles and waste management in the operating theatre.
As part of her role at Vet Sustain, Zoë was involved in the development of its Veterinary Carbon Calculator with Investors in the Environment (iiE), which launched in November 2022.
Meanwhile Solihull-based Willows, a small animal referral hospital that is also part of Linnaeus, scooped Green Veterinary Practice of the Year. The award was shared with Garston Veterinary Group.
Willows received a Green award from iiE, its highest accolade, in December 2022 after reducing its carbon footprint by 7%. Its ‘Green Giants’ group has introduced a sustainability strategy and colleague engagement campaigns around events such as World Water Day and Plastic Free July. The hospital has also invested £35,000 in a new compressor and state-of-the-art oxygen generator system, reducing the need for frequent deliveries of medical gases.
Its commitment to sustainability has enabled Willows to increase its recycling of domestic waste by 12%. Providing its clinical teams with washable hats has prevented 4,000 surgical hats from going to landfill.
Zoë Halfacree commented:
“I am very grateful to receive this award. Working in partnership with our peers will make the biggest and most positive impact on the environment, so I will be donating my prize fund to Vet Sustain to support the collaboration it fosters across the veterinary profession.”
Willows’ Facilities Manager David Hindley said:
“The team at Willows is incredibly proud to receive this recognition. Everyone across the hospital has worked hard to reduce our carbon footprint and the award is testament to their efforts. We want to continue improving the sustainability performance at Willows and have been exploring different ways to reduce our impact on the environment even further.”
The Webinar Vet’s Virtual Congress 2023 offered more than 16 hours of CPD between 6 and 10 February. Anthony Chadwick, Founder of The Webinar Vet, added:
“Regeneration and sustainability are at the heart of what The Webinar Vet does and we've been delighted by the obvious interest in our sustainability summits over the last two years. Part of raising my own spirits and hope is seeing the marvellous work that our winners of the Green Awards are doing to move our industry in a more hopeful, sustainable and environmentally friendly direction.”
For further information about Linnaeus, please visit www.linnaeusgroup.co.uk/about-us/sustainability. More details about the Virtual Congress 2023 can be found at www.thewebinarvet.com/pages/virtual-congress-2023/.