Submitted by Biogen
Healthy Climate, Healthy Lives™ is Biogen’s groundbreaking initiative to eliminate fossil fuels from our operations and address climate, health and equity – issues that have never been more urgent.
In year two, we convened a Scientific Advisory Council to guide our program, analyzed the environmental impact of another three products, and strengthened our plan to reduce scope 3 emissions, setting a science-based target to achieve net zero emissions by 2045. Below are progress highlights across the three pillars of Healthy Climate, Healthy Lives, all designed to foster a healthier, more sustainable and equitable world.
Fossil Fuel Free Operations
Addressing Product Lifecycles
In 2022, we completed a life cycle assessment (LCA) of three biosimilars products – Benepali™, Flixabi™ and Imraldi™ – across multiple configurations in France, Germany, Sweden and the U.K. The LCA provided new insights on climate impacts from material selection to manufacturing and distribution to end-of-life. We found that just a few processes are the biggest contributors to our products’ carbon and air pollution footprints. Now, the team is working on an action plan to address these impacts.
Creating a Culture of Sustainability in Science
Biogen piloted the My Green Labs program in 2021, with 14 labs achieving third-party certification for sustainability practices, including water, energy and plastics. Now, Tooba Gilani, a Senior Associate in EHS, has championed the program’s expansion to 41 labs globally, saying, “the My Green Labs program encourages people who might not have been thinking about sustainability to start acting on it.”
Biogen’s Product and Technology Development team have also been hard at work, developing and implementing their principles for sustainable development. These principles will help to promote environmentally conscious decisions within our operations.
Inspiring and Connecting Employees to Our Goals
Melanie Horkan and Caitlyn Plunkett joined ourIMPACT, Biogen’s employee resource network of 780 employees focused on climate, health and equity. Melanie and Caitlyn work in different departments and came together through ourIMPACT to help advance Biogen’s Healthy Climate, Healthy Lives goals.
They have run events such as Biogen beehive tours, native plant expositions, and group clean-ups of a vital water source in RTP, North Carolina. And, they are working on a closed-loop recycling program in RTP that could help cut costs while reducing waste.
Employee Innovation Challenge Inspires Change
In the past year, our employees have helped to address climate, health and equity. In 2021, Biogen hosted our first Healthy Climate, Healthy Lives Employee Innovation Challenge, which encouraged employees to share ideas that build towards our climate, health and equity goals. In total, we received 180+ ideas from 14 sites worldwide. As of 2022, four winners have received awards (pictured, Dan Blake, who won an award for his idea). All 180+ ideas underwent consideration, and many have already been implemented.
Helping community health clinics care for the most vulnerable amidst the climate crisis
Across the U.S., the climate crisis is threatening the ability of thousands of community health centers care for millions of uninsured or underinsured patients. To address climate-related risks to their operations and patient health, Biogen collaborated with Americares and the Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health (Harvard Chan C-CHANGE).
Together, we surveyed 450+ frontline clinic staff in 47 U.S. states and territories, finding 81% of clinic staff experienced climaterelated disruptions within the past three years. To respond, we introduced a new doctrine on patient-centered climate action, published in JAMA, to catalyze health sector and policy action and published first-ever resources to help. The Climate Resilient Health Clinics Toolkit has reached 2500 clinic providers and staff in a pioneering effort that is catalyzing support from others in the pharmaceutical sector.
Founded in 1978, Biogen is a leading global biotechnology company that has pioneered multiple breakthrough innovations including a broad portfolio of medicines to treat multiple sclerosis, the first approved treatment for spinal muscular atrophy, and two co-developed treatments to address a defining pathology of Alzheimer’s disease. Biogen is advancing a pipeline of potential novel therapies across neurology, neuropsychiatry, specialized immunology and rare diseases and remains acutely focused on its purpose of serving humanity through science while advancing a healthier, more sustainable and equitable world.
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