Get Charged Up By Saving Energy at Your Facility

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In two years, Carestream has cut its energy consumption in half. Much of that savings came from conservation efforts at manufacturing facilities, but we also focused on reducing energy at our office buildings around the world. Our employees take satisfaction in knowing that our efforts did far more than reduce costs—they took a much-needed step toward improving our environment.

Identifying ways to save energy can be easier than you might think. The first step is to appoint an overall energy champion and then establish team leaders willing to be responsible for different departments or areas of your facility. Each leader can recruit his/her own team of volunteers.

Here are two suggestions that can yield rapid savings:

1)      Adjust power usage for equipment when it is not in use. Have each team walk through their area after hours. Are computers and printers still on? You can create automatic sleep settings when systems are not in use for more than 15 minutes. Find out which imaging modalities and other medical equipment can be put into sleep mode when not in use.

2)      Consolidate office equipment (copiers/printers/fax machines), refrigerators and other appliances. Replace personal devices or appliances with energy-efficient devices that can be shared among a group, department or floor of users. Consider converting older appliances to newer energy efficient models. Replacing refrigerators made before 2001 can offer a two-year payback. Flat panel monitors can use up to 70% less energy than a CRT (cathode ray tube) monitor.

If you want to evaluate energy consumption of specific medical or office equipment, contact the manufacturer. Another option is to work with a local university. Talk to professors of industrial engineering or electric engineering. They may agree to have their students evaluate energy use at your facility—and suggest conservation ideas—as part of a class project. Reducing your healthcare facility’s energy consumption can be very rewarding for your employees, your budget and the planet.

Does your healthcare facility have a success story to share about reducing energy usage?

~Cavan Kelsey, Carestream’s Worldwide Director, Environmental, Health & Safety


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