Leaner Energy

Using energy wisely reduces pollution and improves air quality.

Mike Duncan

Meet Mike, a pragmatic facility manager with a keen eye for energy efficiency. Mike and his facilities team pioneered ways to use systems automation to reduce energy use at UH St. John Medical Center, a Catholic hospital, by installing LED lighting retrofits and occupancy sensors in specified areas to safely reduce airflow when unoccupied. These strategies not only result in energy and cost savings for the hospital, but are also a leading example of our systemwide effort to decrease energy use intensity, and thereby greenhouse gas emissions, at all major UH locations through energy conservation measures.

Facility highlight: UH St. John Medical Center

Lighting retrofits: The facilities team at UH St. John Medical Center identified approximately 700 T8 fluorescent light fixtures that are on 24 hours a day, seven days per week that could be replaced by more energy-efficient LED light bulbs. Each bulb retrofit represents 19W reduction in energy usage and a 13-month payback period. Occupancy sensors: Occupancy sensors were installed in operating rooms to allow for reduced airflow when unoccupied while still maintaining temperature, humidity and pressure. Each room with installed sensors results in significant combined gas and electric savings. After a building evaluation, the areas of administration, ambulatory surgery and cardiovascular services were also identified for airflow reduction during unoccupied times, posing further increased combined energy and cost savings at the facility.


  • Utility benchmarking at all major properties through EPA ENERGY STAR Portfolio Manager.
  • 2015 Ohio Energy Cup participation: Ohio Hospital Association’s statewide benchmarking competition in which over 100 Ohio hospitals and health care buildings raced to reduce energy use and greenhouse gas emissions during calendar year 2015. Four UH medical centers were recognized for 2 percent reduction in energy use, including UH Case Medical Center, and UH Geauga, Parma and St. John medical centers.
  • UH Case Medical Center enrolled in the Cleveland 2030 District, an interdisciplinary public-private-nonprofit collaborative with the goal of dramatically reducing the environmental impacts of building construction and operations in and around downtown Cleveland and University Circle. Energy, water and greenhouse gas reductions are the core district goals for both existing buildings and new construction projects.
  • UH Case Medical Center launched a Greening the Labs program to identify cost-effective energy-saving opportunities in equipment and appliances such as lighting, HVAC controls, freezers, fume hoods, biosafety cabinets and office equipment.
Case Medical Center Electricity Use in KWh by Quarter

Green Building and Energy Efficiency

University Hospitals administers a sustainable construction, renovation and maintenance policy to make certain that our buildings maximize operational efficiency and enhance the health and comfort of our buildings’ occupants. The core tenants of this green building policy include a focus on energy efficiency and indoor environmental quality through the application of the U.S. Green Building Council’s LEED Rating System. Sustainable design is an integrated approach that positively impacts all phases of a building’s life-cycle; buildings that are built to ensure energy efficiency over their useful lives result in more comfortable environments, reduced utility costs and reduced strain on our natural energy resources. As we expand our services to Northeast Ohio’s communities through new construction projects such as the construction of our UH Broadview Heights Health Center in 2015, and existing building renovations, we will continue to be diligent in ensuring our buildings are high performance, energy-saving centers of care.

2015 Progress Report on Sustainability

2015 Progress Report on Sustainability

View the online report or download the summary. You can also view our archived progress reports here.

13 Environmental Excellence awards

UH earned 13 Environmental Excellence awards from Practice Greenhealth, including the prestigious System for Change award. The awards recognize our health system’s achievements in environmental-sustainability programs and improvements during 2015.

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