Queensland nurses help combat climate change 

Published: 11 September 2018 

QUEENSLAND nurses and midwives will continue to help create and implement energy and life-saving climate change initiatives throughout the state. 

Queensland Nurses and Midwives’ Union (QNMU) Secretary Beth Mohle said the state’s 59,000-plus nurses and midwives were deeply invested in the reduction of energy-use and waste in Queensland’s hospitals and health services. 

Ms Mohle said the QNMU had contributed to and supported the State Government’s Human Health and Wellbeing Climate Change Adaptation Plan (H-CAP) released by Minister for Health Steven Miles today.

She said QNMU members had first-hand knowledge of where and how the state’s health systems could be improved. She said those on the frontline of health were also keenly aware how climate change factors, such as rising temperatures and sea levels, were already impacting Queenslanders’ wellbeing.

“Queensland nurses and midwives are keenly interested in reducing waste and energy usage in the state’s hospitals and health services. They are also aware how the impacts of climate change, such as rising temperatures, are impacting the very young, the elderly and many others,’’ Ms Mohle said.

“Nurses, midwives and others will continue to play an important role in helping guide the future of Queensland hospitals and health systems and the ongoing development and implementation of the H-CAP plan.’’

Ms Mohle said QNMU representatives attended H-CAP meetings in Cairns, Toowoomba and Brisbane to help guide the plan. She said the QNMU had also formed a Health and the Environment Reference Group (HERG) which aimed to focus on the creation and implementation of systems to protect the environment at work and at home. 

“We understand there is no one-size fits all initiative,’’ Ms Mohle said.

“We also know that nurses and midwives passionately hate waste. I’ve heard some nurses and midwives are campaigning for the reintroduction of sterilisers, so they can put an end to wasteful, single-use materials.

“Queensland nurses and midwives will continue to discuss ways to eliminate waste and help Queensland residents in the face of climate change.’’

QNMU Assistant Secretary Sandra Eales attended today’s launch of the H-CAP report as Ms Mohle was in Bundaberg to meet with QNMU members.

Media contact: Lou Robson - 0422 550 278