Sustainability Superstar: Valerie Lou

The Emergency Department (ED) Green Team was started by assistant professor Valerie Lou in April 2019 in response to concerns that our clinical environment could do more to take environmental sustainability into account. In the United States, the medical industry contributes to 10 percent of greenhouse gas emissions. Much of this could be reduced without negatively affecting patient care. The team draws on input and cooperation from nurses, technicians, the supplies department, environmental services staff, faculty, and residents to achieve its goals.

The team has now taken on the challenge of reducing improper disposal of medical waste. They helped conduct several educational sessions to teach staff how waste should be properly disposed of and why proper disposal is important. They are currently gathering data to determine the energetic and financial impact of these educational sessions.

The team also hosted a grand rounds speaker on the topic of human health and climate change and gathered Medical Center input for the City of Rochester’s Climate Resiliency Plan.

Kudos to the ED Green Team for constantly looking for ways to improve the sustainability of our work environment at the University’s Medical Center!

Know someone who’s made progress with sustainability on campus? Whether the victories have been big or small, we’d love to hear about them! Email us today

Photo courtesy of Valerie Lou

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