“If I had a million dollars…”: The curious incident of a city, a forest, and sustainable anesthesia
- 35 Downloads
To the Editor,
October 16th, 2018 marked the 172nd World Anesthesia Day (WAD) in commemoration of the first demonstration of ether anesthesia1—an event that is still considered one of the most significant events in medical history. The specialty of anesthesia has advanced tremendously since then, and ether has now been displaced by better inhalational anesthetics. Despite all the benefits of inhalational anesthesia, all currently used agents are potent greenhouse gases (GHG) and contribute to global warming.2 Additionally, nitrous oxide is the most potent ozone-depleting agent in the atmosphere today. Edmonton-based members of the recently founded Section for Environmental Sustainability within the Canadian Anesthesiologists’ Society (CAS-ES) planned to celebrate WAD by reforesting part of the Fort McMurray area with the number of trees necessary to offset one year of carbon dioxide equivalents (CDE) produced by volatile anesthetic agents used that year in the Edmonton zone.
Conflict of Interest
The authors declare no conflicts of interest.
This submission was handled by Dr. Hilary P. Grocott, Editor-in-Chief, Canadian Journal of Anesthesia.
The manuscript was not funded.
- 2.Özelsel TJ, Sondekoppam RV, Ip VH, Tsui BC. Re-defining the 3R’s (reduce, refine, and replace) of sustainability to minimize the environmental impact of inhalational anesthetic agents. Can J Anesth 2018; DOI: https://doi.org/10.1007/s12630-018-01279-3.
- 3.Myhre G, Shindell D, Bréon FM, et al. Anthropogenic and natural radiative forcing. In: Stocker TF, Qin D, Plattner GK, et al. (eds). Climate Change 2013: The Physical Science Basis. Working Group I Contribution to the Fifth Assessment Report of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change. NY: Cambridge University Press, Cambridge; 2013.Google Scholar
- 4.United States Environmental Protection Agency. Greenhouse Gas Equivalencies Calculator – September 2017. Available from URL:: https://www.epa.gov/energy/greenhouse-gas-equivalencies-calculator (accessed December 2018).Google Scholar
- 5.Rossaint R, Reyle-Hahn M, Schulte Am Esch J, et al. Multicenter randomized comparison of the efficacy and safety of xenon and isoflurane in patients undergoing elective surgery. Anesthesiology 2003; 98: 6-13.Google Scholar