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London Health Sciences Centre has been engaged in energy management strategies since the 1970's. Since then, technology has advanced in such a way that buildings can be programmed to optimize their performance for heating, cooling, and lighting. Automation is increasingly replacing manual tasks. Volatile energy markets see natural gas, steam, and electricity prices constantly rising and falling. New regulations have been introduced with energy conservation and greenhouse gas emission reductions in mind and now, there is a substantial financial cost associated with a lack of energy efficiency within an organization.
As a hospital, there is a responsibility toward public tax dollars and an environmental responsibility to minimize the negative impacts contributing to some of the very illnesses we treat. Proper energy management can save significant amounts of money, while at the same time, help to reduce air pollution, acid rain, carbon emissions, and health issues. Being energy efficient falls under the "first do no harm" motto of the health care sector and LHSC has made great efforts to do its part.
The energy management plan at LHSC has been broken down into four major categories:
This approach ensures a holistic view of the entire energy stream, from the point of purchase to the point of exit and how we manage energy in between. LHSC has the ability to generate its own electricity at the Victoria Hospital power plant and supply steam and electricity to others, like St Jopesh's Parkwood Institute.
Deciding how to invest in energy management is one the biggest and most important challenges an organization faces considering the many different possibilities and opinions that present themselves. Much of the easier work with short payback periods has already been exhausted at LHSC. Now, Facilities Management is looking for new opportunities and weighing the options carefully. Each project is considered for how it impacts the whole and fits together with existing strategies, equipment, and systems.
Click on the Energy Management Plan chart below to view a full-size version: