Healthcare facilities consume large amounts of energy due to the extensive equipment running constantly, and produce high levels of waste. Eight percent of carbon emissions in the U.S. alone come from healthcare. But since lifesaving equipment runs for 24 hours a day so they can be used at a moment’s notice in the event of an emergency, administrators worry that there is no way to lower their environmental impact without affecting patient care. However, it can be done. At Critical Systems, our healthcare building management solutions allow healthcare organizations to meet their needs while maintaining an environment that is comfortable for everyone in the building.
Setting energy goals that are monitored by a professional responsible for keeping tabs will help health facilities be aware of how much energy they are using. An energy manager is essential to meeting these goals, and the money saved by cutting back on utilities and energy output will outweigh the investment of the professional.
Healthcare equipment is always changing and can be updated to more energy efficient models. Keep up with the sustainable equipment to not only use less energy but gain other benefits such as less radiation output, increased efficiency of the staff and lowered energy costs per patient.
Before investing in the latest equipment, have your old machinery audited for energy use. You may find that minor equipment plugged in all day is consuming energy even when it’s turned off. For healthcare offices that are only open for business hours, this means energy is being drained unnecessarily for up to 16 hours a day. Using an energy efficient power strip can stop drawing energy when the equipment isn’t being used.
Does your healthcare building use conventional washing machines? If so, consider switching to Energy Star-labeled machines, which use over 60 percent less energy and half the water. Also, notify your staff to use cold-water rinses whenever possible, as hot rinse settings use double the energy. Also, Energy Star-qualified office products consume 30 to 75 percent less energy than standard models.
Renewable Sources of Energy
Consider using renewable energy sources, just as Gundersen Health System in Wisconsin did in 2014 when they became the first health system in the nation to attain complete energy independence. Gundersen uses waste biogas created in a landfill to create electricity and heat that fully powers a multiple building campus. Also, a geothermal heat pump system provides heating and cooling for one hospital, while a biomass boiler in the main hospital’s campus accounts for 38 percent of the system’s energy needs.
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At Critical Systems, the people come first, from our employees to our customers. We strive to attract and develop the best talent in the business. Our goal is to deliver innovative solutions for the purpose of making every building secure, efficient, and effectively managed.
Serving the Washington D.C., Northern Virginia, and Baltimore regions, SEBCSI provides innovative solutions for your commercial building or facility. Visit our website and follow us on Facebook, Twitter, and Google+ today!