Wilston Vet Blogs

Environmental Awareness

We are taking up the Environmental Challenge. The Queensland Government (Department of Environment and Resource Management) has agreed to help 20 veterinary surgeries go through the process of becoming more sustainable. Wilston Vet has secured a place in this project.

We will be trained over a period of 6 months to find ways to reduce our waste output as well as our electricity gas and water consumption. We have already made positive steps toward becoming greener with the installation of a rain water tank to be used for our hydobaths and also by switching to the use of 100% recycled paper. We have also discarded our fax machine, as it seemed to be a perpetual waste of paper with many “junk” faxes coming in each day. We now have a virtual fax number whereby a fax that is sent to us is actually transmitted electronically so there is no need to waste any paper in this process. (www.faxmate.com.au) Other initiatives we have already undertaken include several staff members walking to work, rather than using their cars, using our air conditioners as little as possible, and being more careful with our electricity consumption.

Recently we purchased a digital x-ray machine. This is a great way to reduce environmental contamination as we no longer need any developing fluid as the process is completely digitised. Therefore we are no longer disposing of litres of exhausted developing and fixing solutions (which are toxic to the environment even when exposed of according to legal requirements.). This has been an expensive, but very worthwhile venture for us. It also enables us to treat your pets better as we greatly reduce the time for which they are anaesthetised for the x-ray proceedure. This is because we no longer have to wait for the x-ray to be developed as the resuslts are available instantaneously.

We are passionate about the issues surrounding climate change and realise that it is the greatest challenge facing humanity today.

“Climate change is already affecting people directly, with children the most vulnerable.

According to the World Health Organisation (WHO), climate-sensitive diseases such as malnutrition, diahorrea and malaria are claiming an increasing number of lives every year.

As well, UNICEF reports that millions of children living in poverty are the most defenseless and unwitting victims of climate change. UNICEF reports climate change could contribute between 40,000 and 160,000 extra child deaths a year in Asia and the Horn of Africa in its report “Our Climate, Our Children, Our Responsibility.”

Climate-related heath emergencies that have already occurred include the 2003 European heat wave, Hurricane Katrina and recent epidemics of cholera in Bangladesh. The WHO predicts an increase in climate change-related illness and disease, including:

increased malnutrition caused by climate-induced food insecurity;
more deaths and injuries from extreme weather events;
increased diarrhoeal disease linked to either excess or scarcity of water;
more illness and deaths from heatwaves, particularly among the elderly; and
changes in the geography of insect-spread diseases like malaria caused by changing temperatures and rainfall patterns.
Developing nations are at greatest risk from climate change. Climate change and global poverty reinforce each other: climate change makes it harder for poor communities to grow crops, access water and food, avoid conflict and access shelter. Addressing the links between climate change and poverty through sustainable development is a global challenge.” ( by World Vision )

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