Children's Hospital

Here’s where hospitals find energy cost savings

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Written by: Alexa Stone

Energy costs at U.S. hospitals average $1.67 per square foot for electricity and 48 cents per square foot for natural gas. Lighting, heating, and hot water typically represent 61-79% of total energy use. The numbers vary with climate. Regardless, energy cost savings can be claimed in every state, in any season.[1]

Quick fixes

The return on labor and parts cost can be substantial for these:

  • Switch off or disconnect devices when not needed
    • Computers
    • Lights
    • Air-handling units, where not needed at night
  • Adjust settings in unoccupied areas
    • Air-handling setbacks in unoccupied OR
    • Room temperatures
  • Plan and conduct scheduled maintenance and cleaning
    • Inspect AC system vents and airflow
    • Measure AC input/output temperatures
    • Filter changes (monthly)
    • Condenser coils inspected and cleaned (quarterly)
  • Verify water temperatures necessary for laundry

Longer-term solutions

These may be budget items but are almost certain to have positive Return On Investment.

  • Commissioning
  • Continuously monitoring of building energy systems
    This can lead to reductions of 10 to 15 percent in annual energy bills.
  • Cogeneration of space heat, water heat, and power
  • Lighting upgrades
    • Replacing T12 fluorescent lamps with T8 lamps and electronic ballasts. This will reduce per-fixture energy use by as much as 35%.
    • Upgrading to fluorescent fixture reflectors and lenses
    • Replacing older fixtures with LED or Compact Florescent Lamp (CFL) fixtures
  • Laundry wastewater heat recoveryHeat in stored wastewater can be used to preheat incoming water.

Energy use at hospitals is expensive. It’s also a Greenhouse Gas (GhG) concern! Roughly 10% of U.S. GhG emissions have been attributed to healthcare. These are some of the ways Kaiser Permanente eliminated the 800,000-ton annual carbon footprint of its 39 hospitals and 715 medical offices:[2]

  • Initiated working groups to champion energy consumption, waste processing, and purchasing best practices
  • Installed 44 MW of on-site solar arrays, supporting 100 sites
  • Purchased ENERGY STAR® appliances
  • Installed low-flow and automatic water fixtures
  • Installed occupancy sensors
  • Purchased carbon offsets

SOURCES:

[1] NationalGridUS.com – Document file
[2] HFMmagazine.com

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The Baseline Property Condition Assessments described in ASTM E2018-15 do not specify consideration of infectious disease transmission concerns. In a pandemic and post-pandemic environment, that inspection and documentation is essential.

Buildings open to the public must comply with local regulations. For best results and greatest public acceptance, any planning for building repairs and maintenance should not overlook current CDC and NIH guidelines.

Optionally, ecoPreserve's can assist with a comprehensive GBAC STAR™ Accreditation which extends beyond the building to include the goals, actions, equipment, and supplies needed to implement best practices for outbreak prevention, response, and recovery.

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In response to ever-increasing environmental, sociopolitical, and public health challenges, we advocate for and participate in assessment and planning actions that directly address disaster preparations, recovery activities, infrastructure improvements, and smart building/city design.

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  • Address compliance with regulatory agencies and industry standards
Here's how to request further information. Thank you for reaching out!

Here's how to request further information. Thank you for reaching out!

Facility Condition Report

The report is prepared in accordance with the recommendations of ASTM E2018-15, Standard Guide for Property Condition Assessments. This is a partial list of contents:

  • PHYSICAL CONDITION
    • General condition of the building, grounds, and appurtenances
    • Physical deficiencies, their significance, and suggested remedies
    • Photographs
    • Safety issues observed
  • INFECTIOUS DISEASE SPREAD POTENTIAL
  • OPPORTUNITIES
    • Potential operating efficiencies
    • Electricity and water use reductions
    • High-efficiency interior and exterior lighting
  • ORDER OF MAGNITUDE RENOVATION BUDGET
    • Recommended interior finishes
    • Construction costs

Risk Mitigation Improvements

  • IAQ
    • Airflow
    • Temperature and humidity
    • Vertical transportation (escalators and elevators)
  • HVAC EQUIPMENT
    • Settings
    • Conditions
    • Capability
    • Filtration
  • FLOORPLAN
    • Traffic patterns
  • FURNISHINGS
    • Placement for social distancing
    • Clear barriers where social distancing is not possible

Interior Elements

  • Foundation
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  • Structural elements
    • Floors, walls, ceilings
    • Access and egress
    • Vertical transportation (escalators and elevators)
  • HVAC equipment and ductwork
  • Utilities
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Grounds and Appurtenances

  • Façades or curtainwall
  • Topography
  • Storm water drainage
  • Paving, curbing, and parking
  • Flatwork
  • Landscaping
  • Recreational facilities
Here's how to request further information. Thank you for reaching out!

AWARE of CDC and NIH guidelines

The Baseline Property Condition Assessments described in ASTM E2018-15 do not specify consideration of infectious disease transmission concerns. In a pandemic and post-pandemic environment, that inspection and documentation is essential.

Buildings open to the public must comply with local regulations. For best results and greatest public acceptance, any planning for building repairs and maintenance should not overlook current CDC and NIH guidelines.

Optionally, ecoPreserve's can assist with a comprehensive GBAC STAR™ Accreditation which extends beyond the building to include the goals, actions, equipment, and supplies needed to implement best practices for outbreak prevention, response, and recovery.

An OPTIMIZED Assessment

Certified Sustainability Consultants on a facility assessment team can discover ways to lower energy costs. Their understanding of HVAC equipment suitability and condition along with the specifics of LED lighting retrofits can provide offsets for needed investments in upgrades and replacements.

Knowledge of water systems can bring further savings while averting water waste. It can all be part of an assessment which might otherwise overlook water fixtures and irrigation schedules.

How should a facility be ASSESSED?

A thorough facility assessment finds the issues - on the surface or below - which have a potential negative impact on the building. That brings the facility to meet building codes. Beyond that, the assessment proactively addresses the deficiencies not covered by code.

The occupants of a building benefit as the assessment reveals conditions having a potential impact on their health or safety. The assessment must not overlook those conditions, nor fail to consider the frequency and duration of occupant visits.