Guy’s and St Thomas’ trial riverboat deliveries to cut carbon emissions

Kit Heren (17 June, 2021)

The initiative is part of the trust's push to be carbon neutral in nine years

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Guy’s and St Thomas’ hospitals are trialling a riverboat delivery service for their vital medical supplies in a bid to cut carbon emissions.

The Guy’s and St Thomas’ NHS Foundation Trust says it is the first NHS trust in the UK to try a daily riverboat service. If this pilot is successful it will be rolled out on a wider scale.

The trust’s three delivery trucks currently travel around 1,500 miles per week. For each truck removed from the road, about 708 kgs of carbon dioxide could be saved per week. The service would help Guy’s and St Thomas’ reach its aim of net zero carbon emissions by 2030.

David Lawson, chief procurement officer at Guy’s and St Thomas’, said: “The riverboat pilot forms a key part in our ambition to remove over 40,000 truck deliveries from central London roads each year. We also want to encourage and support other organisations to adopt the use of zero emission delivery models to improve air quality for the communities that we serve.”

The pilot service, which launched on Clean Air Day on Thursday June 17, will run twice a day, five days a week. Parcels, including clinical supplies for operating theatres, will be loaded onto the boat at Dartford International Ferry Terminal in Kent, before travelling to Butler’s Wharf Pier in Bermondsey. The parcels will then be taken on electric cargo bikes to Guy’s.

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