1 March 2022
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In his regular PharmaTimes feature, sustainability columnist Joe Newcombe looks out to pharma’s cleaner, greener horizon.

Pharma companies, for good reason, have environmental impact high on their agendas. The pharma industry centres around the mission of providing life-saving medicines for healthcare and – in this spirit – human health and climate change are two sides of the same coin.

After all, decreasing air quality contributes to respiratory disease, warmer global temperatures increase the size of areas affected by infectious diseases and increased levels of extreme weather intensify food insecurity.

Aside from moral imperatives, there are established business reasons to reduce environmental impact. For example, a strong link exists between environmental and financial performance. In part, this link is driven by an appreciation that improved environmental performance is typically achieved through reduction and elimination of wasteful activity. Which in turn leads to reduced costs and bigger profit margins.

Pharma has been making strides to improve its green credentials. Indeed, many of the largest pharma companies have made pledges to reduce carbon emissions, or even reach net zero in the near-to-mid-term. Some of the major areas in which advances can be made include synthesis, formulation, storage and transportation of drugs. With this in mind, it is interesting to take a look at what is being done to edge towards a greener future.


Read the full column in PharmaTimes

See Joe's other PharmaTimes columns.


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Joseph is a patent attorney working in the chemistry and materials field assisting in the drafting and prosecution of UK and European patents. He also has experience in opposition and appeal proceedings before the EPO and the management of national/regional phase entry of international patent applications.

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