The cost of utilities is increasing with inflation jacking up prices by 8.5 percent. As we enter the summer months and more people seek the relief of air-conditioned buildings, but with that comes the added responsibility of maintaining a cooler environment while also choosing products that allow them to put sustainability first. This is especially important for hospitals and other healthcare facilities and 8 percent of global emissions comes from the healthcare sector alone.
Utilizing clean energy is not a new practice for some facilities. Several organizations in Wisconsin are aiming to achieve 100 percent carbon-free electricity by 2050. Gunderson Health System is one of the leaders in this achievement by becoming the first fully energy-independent health system in the United States. The organization produces its own energy from renewable energy sources and pairs it with energy efficiency measures and sustainable building design.
In this Slipstream video, Alan Eber, directors of facility operations and Emma Westphal, operations specialist, both of Gundersen Health, discuss why they chose a career in clean energy and how it drives them to improve not only the patient experience at the hospital, but also the community as a whole.
“I get really excited about a job in clean energy for a number of different reasons,” Eber says. “First and foremost, I came to work at a health system to try and reduce the cost of healthcare in the United States. I think by doing what we’re doing that we are achieving that for sure. We spend less now on our utility bills by far than we ever would have before. We’re burning far less fossil fuels, we’re putting out far less pollution than we used to, obviously reducing waste on our energy side is a huge thing we do here at Gundersen, and it really drives me for being successful at what I do.”