Energy sustains the operations of the health care systems and surrounding communities.
In the health care system, hospitals are the most resource-intensive buildings and require continuous energy for the operation of lights, surgical robots, HVAC systems, food services, and information technology.
With complex organizational structures, improving energy conservation is unclear. However, it is clear our reliance on fossil fuels is unsustainable, and the ability to produce electricity and heat will be the foundation for resilient and low-emission health care systems.
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While it is common practice to use energy saving technologies to achieve energy reductions, people ultimately control how technologies are used and achieve energy savings. Energy management that includes the human dimension is known as Energy Behaviour.
Energy Behaviour approaches have been shown to be successful in the residential sector to reduce home energy use and to induce energy savings in businesses. The application of Energy Behaviour in the institutional sector and how a sector approach can be designed to achieve energy savings is not well understood or documented, although it has been demonstrated in several hospital settings, some which have shown energy savings of 3-10%.
Learn more and explore resources HERE.
HealthCare Energy Leaders Canada (HELC) is an innovative resource designed to improve energy efficiency in Canada’s health care facilities.
Starting in January 2014, with a team of seasoned energy and facility managers, HELC, previously known as HELO (HealthCare Energy Leaders Ontario) helped reduce energy consumption and demand at sites across the province
The HELC Team provided assistance with consumption audits, identification of energy efficiency opportunities, preparation of business case content to help get senior management's buy-in for project formulation and execution, and guidance in completing saveONenergy program documents for potential funding assistance.
Learn more HERE.
Energy Lite was a 14-module virtual (English language) training program delivered at a leisurely pace over a number of weeks by subject matter experts intimate with the workings of health care facilities.
The sessions provided the basics of health care energy management to those responsible for facility management best practices including hospital and long-term care staff, energy and operations managers, engineering/facilities staff, and others.
The Energy Lite Online Training course was a flexible to the demands and needs of attendees and was designed to present the most popular elements of sound energy management practices in engaging one-hour training sessions.
The last training course was successfully completed in 2020.
Learn more and access the Energy Lite Training Resources HERE.
In 2019, the Canadian Coalition for Green Health Care led an energy project to assist health care facilities in Ontario’s remote First Nations communities on the western coast of James Bay with energy efficiency, conservation, education, and training.
Learn more HERE.
In 2017 the Coalition released a report, Medical Imaging Equipment Energy Use Study: Assessing Opportunities to Reduce Energy Consumption in the Health Care Sector, which was produced with funding support from Natural Resources Canada and BC Hydro.
The objective of this study was to gather energy data for three types of medical imaging equipment that have been pre-identified as possible candidates for ENERGY STAR® certification:
- Computed Tomography (CT)
- General Radiography (X-ray)
- Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI)
To gather this data, the Coalition partnered with Nanaimo Regional General Hospital (NRGH) in British Columbia, The Hospital for Sick Children (SickKids) in Ontario, and University Health Network (UHN) in Ontario. We also extend thanks for Toronto Hydro for lending power loggers for this project.
A number of recommendations were made including the development of purchasing guidelines, energy behaviour guidance directed at equipment users, optimizing energy consumption of cooling requirements, and the development of a Business Case for medical imaging equipment purchasing personnel.
Read the full study HERE.
In 2012, My Sustainable Canada and the Canadian Coalition for Green Health Care launched an energy efficiency initiative to help Canada's health services sector realize energy savings and reduction opportunities. The ENERGY STAR® Health Care Energy Leadership Program, or HELP, was developed with the support of Natural Resources Canada's Office of Energy Efficiency.
Case Study - ENERGY STAR® part of Canada’s green health care landscape-EN
From February to March 2011, the Canadian Coalition for Green Health Care, in partnership with My Sustainable Canada, presented a health care food services resource guide highlighting ENERGY STAR® qualified product use best practices, which was developed with the financial support of Natural Resources Canada.
A distributed survey of Food Service Managers included questions on the type of equipment and appliances they currently have in their kitchens. At the time, many hospital kitchen systems were being reassessed as aging equipment required updating. This project helped health care Food Service Managers understand the benefits of selecting ENERGY STAR® qualified products for those updates