Increasing a healthcare facilities sustainability not only reduces their impact on the environment, but it can also make economic sense as well. Many healthcare facilities have already started to incorporate sustainable practices. Recently, the Washington Business Journal reported on one facility doing just that.
George Washington University Hospital along with American University announced a 20 year plan to fuel both campuses with solar energy. Specifically GW Hospital has agreed to purchase 52 megawatts of solar photovoltaic power. This is enough to power both universities and a third of the hospital.
The solar power contract with Duke Energy Renewables could save them up to $1 million over the 20-year life span.
In addition to solar power, the hospital is also looking at ways to improve the efficiency and sustainability of the lighting, the climate control systems, and the dampers.
Barry Wolfam, the CEO of GW Hospital said that these latest efforts are part of their “Healthier, Happier” campaign launched last fall. This program “aims to cut costs and improve the hospital’s environmental impact with smarter purchasing and energy efficiency, while focusing on healthier food options and safer chemicals”.
“It’s about economics and being part of something greater than ourselves,” Wolfman said.