Pharma’s Best Chance to Reduce Carbon Emissions
Recently AeroSafe Global CEO Jay McHarg shared his thoughts on “the green cold chain,” including opportunities for sustainability savings through the adoption of reusable cold chain shipping containers and logistics.
Part of the reason that the biopharmaceutical industry is recorded to emit more CO2 than the automotive industry has to do with the complexity and vastness of drug distribution logistics and transport needs. When it comes to getting temperature-sensitive therapies in the hands of providers and patients, historically there has been overreliance on short delivery durations (i.e., overnight pharmaceutical shipping). But given ongoing supply chain re-orientation and increasing energy costs, those services are becoming more expensive and unfortunately less reliable due to more frequent extreme weather events.
Adding urgency to the situation is the fact that our planet is getting warmer, and faster than anticipated. In fact, the UN Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) report, released in August, sounded alarm bells that unless we all act with intent to reduce greenhouse gas emissions, sea levels will rise faster and higher than previously estimated. The report revealed that, “The world will hit one-and-a-half degrees warming much earlier than expected, possibly the middle of 2034,” leading to more frequent extreme weather events such as droughts and floods.
Given this relatively bleak outlook, it is reassuring that many pharmaceutical manufacturers have already committed themselves to ambitious environmental, social and governance (ESG) initiatives in the coming decade. For many companies in this sector, achieving and demonstrating carbon neutrality is at the top of this list. The adoption of high quality reusable cold chain packaging and containers is practice-proven to reduce CO2, landfill, energy usage and water consumption both during manufacture and during each round trip journey the cold chain container makes.