Energy savings project lessens facility’s environmental impact
Aside from the war in Iraq, increasing health care costs and global warming
are hot topics among experts and concerned citizens alike. In January,
Atlantic General Hospital took on a facility-wide project to do their
part in lessening these crises.
While seemingly unrelated, these issues were both top-of-mind for hospital
leadership when they contracted with Johnson Controls, a global leader
in energy efficiency products and solutions that create a more comfortable
and sustainable world. The 15-phase project, which includes upgrading
to high efficiency lighting fixtures, increasing insulation, installing
passive occupancy sensors, and using low flow water fixtures among other
retrofits and upgrades, will realize an estimated energy savings of 20
percent or more over the next decade.
The savings will cover the expenses associated with the contract and will
in time result in reduced operating costs, an outcome that can translate
to lower costs for patient services.
Atlantic General Hospital is taking a leading role on the Eastern Shore
with this broad-scale effort to “go greener.” Over the next
10 years, the improvements are guaranteed to reduce CO2 emissions caused
by electricity generation and the burning of fossil fuels by more than
This reduction in released CO2, the primary greenhouse gas culprit in global
warming, translates to over 14,000 trees planted; it would take this number
of trees to absorb the over 10,500,000 saved pounds of CO2. The CO2 savings
is also the equivalent of removing the emissions of over 1,000 cars. Over
the life of the contract, the conserved electricity, in particular, would
supply enough power to 935 houses for one year. And, the upgrades to the
bathroom and sink fixtures throughout the facility will save 860,000 gallons
of water each year, meaning that over the 10-year haul, 8.6 million gallons
of water saved or the equivalent of almost 500 in ground swimming pools.
So far, the process has been a smooth one, with no deviation from the planned
completion date early this spring.
“As a not-for-profit community hospital, it is our duty to ensure
that we are contributing positively to the community environment, and
that we are judiciously using community resources,” said Michael
Franklin, president and CEO of Atlantic General Hospital. “An effort
such as this demonstrates our commitment to our responsibility for the
communities we serve.”
Atlantic General Hospital will receive a report from Johnson Controls annually
during the contract period detailing and verifying the actual energy savings
and reduced impact on the local and global environments.