Energy-Saving Changes At University Hospitals
As part of our efforts to minimize harmful emissions into the air, water and earth, University Hospitals is improving energy efficiency and conservation within our operations and increasing support of environmentally safe, cost-effective and sustainable energy sources.
Health care facilities have unique energy demands. Our hospitals need to meet energy needs consistently and reliably in order to provide the highest quality patient care around the clock. Energy production can generate pollutants that are detrimental to human health, including carbon dioxide, nitrous oxide, sulfur oxides, carcinogens and mutagens. Conditions that have been linked to the byproducts of non-renewable energy generation include asthma, chronic bronchitis and cardiovascular disease.
Greenhouse gas emissions from energy production lead to climate change, which itself has health consequences, including changes in disease patterns and extreme weather events. By becoming more energy efficient as a system, we can reduce these risks and save money that can be invested in our employees and patients.
UH is in the process of implementing several changes that will increase the energy efficiency of our buildings, including retrofitting our lighting fixtures—changing our fluorescent light fixtures to more efficient equivalents, adding motion-sensing automatic light switches, and installing LED lights in our exit signs and parking garages.
Both University Hospitals Ahuja Medical Center and University Hospitals Seidman Cancer Center house rooftop solar panels installed by Ohio Cooperative Solar (OCS), an Evergreen Cooperative company. Like all of the Evergreen Cooperatives, OCS is committed to local employment and providing wealth-building opportunities in our communities—the company is 100 percent owned by its workers, who live in Cleveland and face barriers to employment.