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The UK's primary care sustainability network

My Green Journey

16th June 2020
I have been a lover of nature and an environmentalist all my life, but it was only around 15 years ago that I realised the extent to which the climate and ecological crisis is a health crisis.

Dr Honey Smith

This led to many years of a feeling of desperation and a consequent paralysing inactivity.

Eventually I was able to appreciate that the best way to have hope is to take action, and my own personal efforts in carbon reduction helped me to feel more hopeful and positive. I started riding a bicycle to work, which helped both my fitness and my carbon footprint. I was astounded how quickly my fitness improved; my first journey up Sheffield hills to a practice 6 miles from home had me walking on several occasions and arriving at work with legs so weak that I had to pull myself up the stairs by my arms… after 2 weeks I could manage all the hills and needed a new challenge… so cycling 13 miles to my 2nd job in Chesterfield became the next regular journey. Cycling has improved my sense of well-being, both because of the stress-reducing effects of exercise, and also because it made me feel empowered in my carbon reducing efforts.

This renewed energy and positivity encouraged me to enquire about like-minded doctors who were also concerned about the climate and ecological crisis as a health crisis, and this was how I became involved in Greener Practice. The energising effect of our work together has been and incredibly positive focus in my life for the last two and a half years.