Due to the nature of the industry, hospitals use a tremendous amount of power and as much as two and a half times as much as an average commercial building. This is problematic when you consider the rising cost of energy along with the regulations imposed by the government on carbon emissions.
It is for this reason why many healthcare facilities are now looking to make the switch from fossil fuels to renewable energy. This is a smart move in a time where environmental damage is a huge topic and organisations need to take action, plus it is also a chance for hospitals to make gigantic savings and more than you average commercial building.
A study showed that the NHS could save over £400 million and cut 1 million tonnes of carbon emissions annually as well as make positive changes that could improve health by being more environmentally-friendly. It is no secret that the NHS is under great strain financially so seizing an opportunity like this could be vital for future success and for playing a big role in reducing the nation’s carbon footprint in the coming years.
So, how can hospitals be more environmentally-friendly? Switching to energy-efficient external power supplies is a smart option which could make a big difference and help hospitals to greatly reduce their carbon footprint. Other options that have been put forward include offering mental health services to people being treated in hospital for physical health needs, encouraging staff to walk/cycle to work and using technology to improve communication between staff and patients (which can eliminate the need for people to come into the hospital).
It is clear that there are many benefits for hospitals to switch to renewable energy and to be more energy-efficient, including reducing costs, better public health and environmental conservation. It is not a simple case of making a quick switch, however, as there are factors like high initial investment, the fact that renewable energy is not available everywhere and the fact that it can be vulnerable so some form of backup would be required. This means that availability, market conditions and government policy will need to be favourablein order for this to be a viable option for healthcare facilities.
Hospitals use a tremendous amount of energy and much more than your average commercial building. Switching to renewable energy and being more eco-friendly could help hospitals to greatly reduce their energy bills and reduce their footprint, plus this is also helpful in terms of boosting public health. It is likely that hospitals will begin to look at renewable energy and action which can reduce their carbon footprint, but there are a few obstacles that need to be overcome if this is going to be a good option.