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ECR2025 President Prof. Andrea Rockall from Imperial College London, UK explained why radiology should be a driver of change in achieving sustainability in healthcare in an interview with Mélisande Rouger at ECR2024 last weekend in Vienna.

‘Radiology is a very innovative and change-compliant type of specialty,’ she said. ‘Radiology has quite a high carbon footprint, partly because of the data storage side of things, partly because of the equipment that are very energy intensive. We have an opportunity of making change through leadership and finding simple ways as planning the more strategic longer-term changes that have to be made.’

She also spoke about ongoing projects at her department to conserve existing resources – for example, a software installed for a centralized automatic shutdown of computers in need of updates or security patches at night.

‘That saved the institution £500,000 in approximately a year,’ she said. ‘We’ve made massive savings just by turning off our normal everyday working computers.’

The first thing departments should do is to get a sustainability group with radiologists, radiographers, managers, technologists and physicists, to decide on strategies they can implement, she added.

Rockall also acknowledged the increasing role of the industry in implementing sustainable strategies, and unveiled ECR2025’s theme ‘Planet Radiology’, which is an invitation to the community to work towards more sustainable practice.

‘It’s a concept that came through the publication around planetary health that came out about ten years ago,’ she concluded. ‘Without a healthy planet, we humans can’t stay healthy.’