The Sustainable Development Unit (SDU) is a British Government Agency with the purpose of embedding the principles of sustainable development, social value and the broader determinants of health and social care in England. The SDU develops tools, policy and research to help people and organizations to promote sustainable development and adapt to climate change. The SDU is co-funded by NHS England and Public Health England and hosted by NHS England. It has a cross-system advisory group that includes the Department of Health, DEFRA and most of the major national health agencies. The SDU calculated the first comprehensive carbon footprint for the NHS in 2008 and in 2012 for the whole health and social care system. The Supply Chain Carbon Emissions in 2008 and recognizing that it was impossible to achieve its carbon emissions targets. SDU staff are based in Cambridge.
NHS SDU was set up in 2008 by the CEO of the NHS Sir David Nicholson. It was formed by the NHS in England under the auspices of the Office of the Strategic Health Authorities (OSHA) and was originally hosted by NHS East of England and its Chief Executive, Sir Neil McKay. In 2013 the SDU dropped ‘NHS’ from its title when it took over responsibility for the whole health and care sector. It has been this point that it has become co-funded by and accountable to both NHS England and UK Public Health, and has begun reporting to a cross-system advisory board with the Department of Health, DEFRA, DH Arm’s Length Bodies (including NHS Improvement, NICE, NHS Digital Care, NHS Digital Services, NHS Property Services, NHS Confederation and NHS Providers.