Carbon Reduction Plan

Published: 11.08.23

Commitment to achieving Net Zero

HomeLink Healthcare is a member of the Independent Healthcare Providers Network (IHPN) Climate Change Group and is committed to being Net Zero carbon emissions for scope 1 and 2 by 2035 and Net Zero carbon emissions for its supply chain by 2045, aligned to the IHPN climate pledge.

Baseline Emissions Footprint

Baseline emissions are a record of the greenhouse gases that have been produced in the past and were produced prior to the introduction of any strategies to reduce emissions. Baseline emissions are the reference point against which emissions reduction can be measured.

Baseline Year and first reporting period: 01/01/2022-31/12/2022

Additional Details relating to the Baseline Emissions calculations.

Between March and June 2023 HomeLink Healthcare Ltd undertook a comprehensive carbon accounting exercise for its business activities for the first time. This encompassed a full screening, and subsequent calculation of Scope 1, 2 and 3 emissions sources, in line with the Greenhouse Gas (GHG) Protocol Corporate Value Chain Standard.

Choice of Baseline Year:

2022 was chosen as the Baseline Year because prior to 2023 HomeLink Healthcare Ltd had not formally measured its carbon emissions and this is its first Carbon Reduction Plan.

Baseline Emissions Calculations:

Unless otherwise stated, carbon emissions conversion factors for 2022, published by the Department for Business Energy and Industrial Strategy (BEIS), were applied to the relevant ‘activity data’ of HomeLink Healthcare Ltd across the portfolio of emissions sources identified.
The organisation applies the operational control approach to define its reporting boundary.

The emissions sources included, activity data and methods used for carbon accounting are detailed below:

Scope 1:

Company Facilities: HomeLink Healthcare Ltd (HLHC) did not have operational control over any company facilities in 2022. The company rented a very small space in shared offices, with any direct responsibility for energy consumption, costs and fugitive emissions lying with the Landlord.

Mobile sources: HLHC had two company vehicles, the only source of Scope 1 emissions.

Scope 2:

HLHC had no Company Facilities, operated no electric charging infrastructure and had no electric or plug-in hybrid vehicles and therefore no Scope 2 emissions sources.

Scope 3.0: Categories required to be reported under this measure

Upstream Transportation and Distribution:

Any emissions related to the transportation and distribution of goods between Tier 1 suppliers and HLHC are included within reporting of Purchased Goods and Services. Transportation and distribution data was not provided separately to HLHC in 2022.

Waste Generated in Operations:

In 2022 PPE worn by HLHC’s clinical teams visiting patients generated the only waste in operations. This waste was generally disposed of through patients’ domestic waste and emissions have been calculated using conversion factors for household residual waste.

Business Travel:

Expenses data has been used to calculate business travel, with BEIS conversion factors being used for business mileage and SIC intensity factors based on spend being used for hotel stays, public transport and taxis.

Employee Commuting:

The vast majority of emissions in this category relate to working from home as there were very few employee journeys into offices or other sites, that were not considered business travel, during 2022. Working from home emissions have been derived from hours worked at home by corporate staff, applying an appropriate hourly homeworking emissions factor.

Downstream Transportation and Distribution:

HLHC has no downstream transportation and distribution activity.

Scope 3.1: Additional categories measured and reported

In addition to the Scope 3 categories required under this measure we have also included the following Scope 3 categories in our baseline year emissions:

• Purchased goods and services
• Capital Goods
• Fuel and Energy Related Activity
• Use of Sold Products

Scope 3 emissions account for 98.4% of HLHC’s total emissions.

Of the categories required to be reported under this measure business travel is by far the largest source of emissions making up 97% and will continue to be a key focus area of efficiency and carbon reduction efforts for HLHC.

Additional categories measured and reported make up 48% of Scope 3 emissions, and 47% of total emissions. They are included in reporting as HLHC considers it essential to measure, track and report all material sources of carbon emissions to have a credible Net Zero commitment and carbon reduction strategy.

Purchased Goods and Services and Capital Goods alone accounted for 56% of Scope 3 emissions and 53% of total emissions and will become an area of focus for the organisation going forward.

Baseline year emissions: 2022

Carbon Emmissions Plan Table 1

Current Emissions Reporting

Reporting Year: 2022

As 2022 is the baseline year emissions for the reporting year 2022 are the same as detailed above

Emissions reduction targets

We have adopted the following carbon reduction targets to set our course to achieve Net Zero:

Carbon Intensity Reduction Targets

In order to provide the short-term focus required, while acknowledging likely increases in demand for our services over the coming years, we have set near term carbon intensity reduction targets per £1,000 of company turnover.

HomeLink Healthcare Ltd aims to reduce carbon emissions from a baseline of 45 kgCO2e per £1,000 turnover in 2022:

  • To less than 29.2 kgCO2e per £1,000 revenue in 2027, a reduction of 35%
  • To less than 22.5 kgCO2e per £1,000 revenue in 2030, a reduction of 50%

Carbon Emmissions Plan Table 2

Absolute Emissions Reduction Targets

We have also set a longer-term absolute emissions reduction target, aligned to the NHS’ “Carbon Footprint Plus” absolute emissions reduction target for Scope 1, 2 and 3.

We will reduce our total Scope 1, 2 and 3 carbon emissions by 80% by 2036 to 2039 to less than 63 tCO2e from a baseline of 316 tCO2e in 2022.

We will update on progress against these emissions reduction targets annually in our updated Carbon Reduction Plans.

Carbon Reduction Projects

Completed Carbon Reduction Initiatives

Sustainable practices we already follow at HomeLink Healthcare and actions we have taken to reduce carbon emissions include the following:

  • Our therapy staff in London utilise public transport and therefore already work in a low-carbon, sustainable model of care.
  • We offer remote physiotherapy sessions, reducing the need to travel to patients’ homes and increasing patient choice.
  • Our therapists draw on assets outside the healthcare system, such as family relationships, local spaces and community groups. Often undertaking Physiotherapy to support patients to access local gardens and public transport.
  • Our AHPs work in an integrated system, collaborating with multiple organisations to ensure that patients receive timely medical and social input to prevent unnecessary hospital admissions.
  • Walking aids – working in patients’ homes, our staff can identify when equipment can be safely removed and reused.
  • We know care needs change when at home – our staff can support to prevent over prescription of equipment.
  • When HomeLink Healthcare AHPs are in patients’ homes we ensure the patients are able to access adequate and appropriate nutrition and hydration which will help to prevent ill health and add life to years not just years to life.
  • Our AHPs can support patients post-surgery with early supported discharge.
  • Our AHPs can also work with patients pre-operatively to maximise nutrition and increase global strength to improve outcomes.
  • We undertake tree-planting initiatives, recognising the importance of the natural world in our future health, supporting biodiversity, cleaner air and carbon sequestration. In 2022 we planted a tree for every member of staff as well as planting trees as part of our Environmental Improvement Opportunities program.
  • We are working towards a ‘paper free’ company to reduce its inherent environmental impacts – currently we are 90% paper-free.
  • We purchase bio-degradable PPE aprons for use in the delivery of our services.
  • HomeLink Healthcare has introduced mandatory training on Environmentally Sustainable Healthcare available through the NHS England eLearning portal, which encompasses the modules ‘Building a Net Zero NHS’ and ‘Environmental Sustainability in Quality Improvement’.
  • Over 95% of all internal and client meetings are held virtually.
  • Public transport is the ‘automatic choice’ for all corporate travel.
  • Rail is used in place of air-travel for all long-distance travel.
  • Smart routing (backed by Google technology) for our community teams ensures that travel between patients is minimised.
  • Our major suppliers are asked to report on their environmental policy as part of their annual re-evaluation.
  • HomeLink Healthcare IT systems are cloud-based, which will be 100% renewable energy powered by 2025, water positive by 2030 and zero waste by 2030.

These measures will be in effect when performing contracts.

Future Carbon Reduction Initiatives

We plan to undertake the following environmental management, enabling and direct carbon reduction measures during the next 12 months:

  • In early 2023 we commenced the process of developing an environmental management system and expect to become ISO 14001 certified by the end of 2023.
  • Introduction of a policy to ensure all future company vehicles leased or purchased by the company are low or ultra-low emissions and that these be zero emissions vehicles where viable and always zero emissions by 2028.
  • Development of an incentive scheme to encourage community-based care teams to use electric vehicles where vehicles are required and start to encourage staff car sharing again (post-Covid).
  • A review of our protective masks and glove use policy and subsequent campaign to encourage our staff to reduce their use where it is safe to do so.
  • A full review of the stock sent out to staff, including kit make up and packaging, to identify any potential for reduction in material usage that can be implemented.
  • Increased engagement with our customers to identify ways we can further collaborate to reduce inefficiencies and waste and reduce carbon emissions across Integrated Care Systems.

In the future we hope to implement further measures such as:

  • Development of service design and incentive schemes to support reduction in car use for patient visits, encouraging take up of active travel and increased use of public transport where viable.
  • Purchasing from suppliers on a regional basis where possible to reduce delivery emissions.
  • Integration of defined environmental and carbon reduction performance and targets into our initial supplier selection process and contracts with suppliers.
  • Conducting waste audits with our customers to better understand disposal methods and carbon impact and identify ways to reduce.
  • Evaluation and implementation of more in-depth carbon reduction training, such as the ‘Carbon Literacy for Healthcare’ programme.

Declaration and Sign Off

This Carbon Reduction Plan has been completed in accordance with PPN 06/21 and associated guidance and reporting standard for Carbon Reduction Plans.

Emissions have been reported and recorded in accordance with the published reporting standard for Carbon Reduction Plans and the GHG Reporting Protocol corporate standard1 and uses the appropriate Government emission conversion factors for greenhouse gas company reporting-2.

Scope 1 and Scope 2 emissions have been reported in accordance with SECR requirements, and the required subset of Scope 3 emissions have been reported in accordance with the published reporting standard for Carbon Reduction Plans and the Corporate Value Chain (Scope 3) Standard-3.

This Carbon Reduction Plan has been reviewed and signed off by the board of directors (or equivalent management body). The signed document can be found here.

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