Vet Sustain lays out six goals to unify the approach of the veterinary profession to sustainability

Vet Sustain has today launched their strategic plan to tackle six veterinary sustainability goals. These aim to highlight the diverse roles that veterinary professionals can play in addressing the global issues surrounding climate change, biodiversity loss, public health threats and persistent animal welfare challenges.

Full details of the six sustainability goals can be found at the Vet Sustain website.

Vet Sustain has been set up by a group of UK vets as the world’s first organisation dedicated to supporting veterinary professionals and vet led teams in being a leading force for sustainability. It meets the calls of the Vet Futures and VN Futures projects for the veterinary professions to increase their prominence and influence in sustainability and recognise the unique “One Health” skill set and trusted position held by vets, vet nurses and members of the vet-led team.

Dr Laura Higham, Vet Sustain founder, says: “Our profession already delivers a wide range of sustainability services to society. We understand the inextricable links between human, animal and environmental wellbeing. But it’s time for our influence and duty to reach beyond the patients under our care, to all animals that are impacted by human activity.”

Dr Simon Doherty, a director of Vet Sustain and senior vice president of the British Veterinary Association, said that veterinary professionals occupy an “extraordinary niche” for driving the sustainability agenda. “By taking steps such as reducing the carbon footprint of our veterinary operations, ensuring responsible medicine use and supporting regenerative forms of agriculture and aquaculture, vets can address the environmental and ethical impacts of our own activities and the sectors we influence.”

The organisation is currently focused on three key topics through their working groups: food and farming, sustainability in veterinary education and the environmental footprints of veterinary practices. By embedding and mainstreaming sustainability planning and action into the veterinary agenda, Higham is confident that Vet Sustain can support veterinary professionals to become a leading force for sustainability. 

“To support a sustainable future, we must tackle climate change, and promote healthy and biodiverse ecosystems,” Higham continued.  “The COVID-19 pandemic has given a recent stark reminder of the importance of protecting nature to also protect humanity.”

This month sees the Vet Sustain team launch their new website which outlines their strategy, veterinary sustainability goals. The website includes a growing list of how-to guides, training resources and case studies designed to support veterinary professionals to promote environmental and ethical animal care and production.

Individuals and organisations interested in finding out more or supporting the growing organisation are encouraged to visit the website, follow on social media or contact Laura Higham: