Health Care Retrofits Providing Energy Efficient Benefits

Building Efficiency

A positive diagnosis: How hospitals are reducing energy consumption

GreenBiz, November 21, 2013

With the media attention paid to the rollout of theAffordable Care Act (aka Obamacare), it’s easy to miss a related, if seemingly mundane, development: the recent release of the U.S. Department of Energy’s “Advanced Energy Retrofit Guide for Healthcare Facilities.” Of all the challenges facing the nation’s health care system, one of the most pervasive — yet solvable — is its overwhelming energy consumption. U.S. health care facilities spend $8.8 billion per year on energy.

Connecticut’s Greenwich Hospital was one facility contributing to that colossal number. On the U.S. government’s 1-100 rating scale for Energy Star, Greenwich Hospital scored a disappointing score of 47, falling far short of the 75 required to garner an Energy Star designation. The hospital implemented a deep energy retrofit and the results [PDF] speak for themselves: Greenwich saved more than 1.7 million kWh and $303,000 of electricity per year, nearly doubled its Energy Star rating to 88, and reduced its overall energy consumption by 35 percent with a less-than-six-month payback on the effort.

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