Nursing and Midwifery Green Week 2024

The first ever Nursing and Midwifery Green Week will take place from 18 – 22 March 2024.

Making up the largest part of the NHS workforce, nurses and midwives have a unique and far-reaching relationship with the people and communities they serve and are integral to helping us build a greener NHS.

The awareness week provides an opportunity to amplify the contribution of Nursing and Midwifery colleagues in delivering the NHS Net Zero Carbon Ambition, as well as supporting and empowering nurses and midwives to make sustainable changes for the benefit of the populations we serve, our profession, and the NHS.

National NHS England colleagues are also holding a series of national webinars on Thursday 21 March for nurses and midwives across England. You can find out more and sign up here: Greener Nurses and Midwives Week: National webinars | NHS England Events.


Dr Tracey Cooper MBE
Chief Midwife for North East & Yorkshire

“Environmental sustainability is important to maternity services. Anything we can all do to reduce our carbon footprint can help.

  • Ensuring we have hubs within the community women can access for maternity care and different options for place of birth (NICE 2023) can spread out the environmental impact of everyone going to the same place for maternity care.
  • Explore impact of gases and plastics that we use in current practice to see if we can reduce the impact on our planet.
  • Providing the support for women who choose to breastfeed to continue, as this has less environmental impact than artificial feeding.
  • Consider using reusable baby products including wipes and nappies.
  • Consider appointing a maternity environment champion to raise awareness of environmental issues and impact on our planet.”


Gill Hunt
Joint Regional Chief Nurse (Interim)

“We know the impact of climate change poses a significant risk to public health. I would urge all nurses and midwives to become involved, to lead and support change in making healthcare more sustainable. This is an important time to become involved, as the pending Chief Nursing Officer strategy will have a focus on the area of protecting our planet. This will include how nurses and midwives can be at the forefront of championing sustainability, advocating for those most impacted by climate change and delivering evidence-based lower carbon care.”



Sharon Haggerty
Deputy Director of Nursing

“Sustainability in nursing is conceptually related to preserving a safe environment for our patients and the wider community and the NHS has a moral obligation to become more ecologically responsible and sustainable as a healthcare provider.

The delivery of healthcare has a direct influence on the environment and contributes to climate change, therefore nurses need to be aware of how to use and dispose of natural resources in their day-to-day clinical practice in order to minimise any adverse impact on the environment.

Ultimately, it is incumbent on us all to include the sustainability consideration into everyday nursing practice.”


Phyl Cole
Deputy Director of Nursing

“The word ‘’Sustainability’’ is used so widespread now and means different things to different people. In broader terms I have heard it described as ‘taking action’ and to ‘live so that what we consume now does not vastly exceed what we contribute’. There is also something about enablement and in healthcare provision the ability to support and to innovate models of care which meets the health needs of the present, without compromising the health of future generations is so important. We owe it to our planet and to our future generations to act and take personal ownership, it feels so much more urgent as we start to see effects of global warming.”


Michelle Henderson
Senior Nurse

“As a Public Health Nurse I am passionate about the contribution nurses and midwives can play in ill health prevention and tackling the wider determinants of health which will contribute to a more sustainable and greener health and care system  .

Seeing prevention as a priority will ensure we reduce some of the burden of some of biggest chronic health conditions that will mean a reduction in accessing healthcare services, a reduction in the need for medicines and through self care digital and closer to home services reduce the need to attend healthcare facilities.”