Effects of East Anglian breast screening on climate change

A newly appreciated problem — climate change, for example — can spur people to consider all sorts of possible remedies. This study appears to have been done in that spirit:

The authors, at the University of East Anglia and at Norfolk and Norwich University Hospital, explain:

Health services contribute significantly to carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions and, while services in the UK are beginning to address this, the focus has been on reducing energy consumption rather than road transport, a major component of emissions. We aimed to compare the distances travelled by patients attending mobile breast screening clinics compared to the distance they would need to travel if screening services were centralized….

The availability of mobile breast screening clinics for the 60,675 women who underwent screening over a three-year cycle led to a return journey distance savings of 1,429,908 km. Taking into account the CO2 emissions of the tractor unit used for moving the mobile clinics around, this equates to approximately 75 tonnes of CO2 saved in any one year.

Gotta love unintended consequences when they turn out positive.

2 thoughts on “Effects of East Anglian breast screening on climate change

  1. Poco a poco says:

    “Warming up : Prospects for international agreement on combating climate change look brighter.” Journal Nature (10/1/14) http://www.nature.com/news/warming-up-1.16024 See also http://www.nature.com/news/climate-policy-ditch-the-2-c-warming-goal-1.16018 “The window of opportunity for improving goal-setting is open. This autumn, a big push on climate policy begins — with the aim of crafting a new global agreement by late 2015 at the UNFCCC’s Conference of the Parties in Paris. Getting serious about climate change requires wrangling about the cost of emissions goals, sharing the burdens and drawing up international funding mechanisms. But diplomats must move beyond the 2 °C goal. Scientists must help them to understand why, and what should replace it.”

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