Renewable energy in hospitals: sensible or senseless?
Renewable energy, green energy, and “going green” used to conjure up images of homes covered in solar panels, or fields of wind turbines funneling power into a desert villa. While there are still plenty of homes with personal wind turbines or solar panels adorning the roof, renewable energy has become more available across a number of industries, including the health industry.
Renewable energy in hospitals may sound strange. Hospitals absolutely need reliable power, but is renewable energy reliable? Can hospitals feasibly use renewable energy? Read on to learn about the feasibility of renewable energy in hospitals, who’s using it already, and why more hospitals should switch.
Can hospitals use renewable energy?
In the past, utilizing renewable energy meant surrounding your business with renewable energy power sources. It’s highly unlikely that you’ve seen any hospitals with wind farms behind them or solar panels plastered all over the outside. Despite this, hospitals can use renewable energy.
Many companies, like Phoenix Energy, connect hospitals and businesses with renewable energy sources — even when the renewable energy source is far away. These companies often buy energy from a source, like a wind farm or solar company, and then sell it. This allows buyers, like a hospital, to buy renewable energy without having to install any panels or turbines.
But, does this make renewable energy a good idea for hospitals, and are any hospitals using renewable?
Are any hospitals using renewable energy now?
We’ve established that renewable energy is available to many hospitals, but are they using it? In short: yes.
Many hospitals are converting to 100% renewable energy, while others are taking steps to be greener in other ways. So, not only is it possible for hospitals to use renewable energy, it’s already happening. And, for good reason.
4 benefits of using renewable energy in hospitals
Renewable energy has a number of benefits for hospitals making the switch.
1. Renewable energy can save money
Buying renewable energy from a provider can, surprisingly, yield financial savings. Depending on the rate locked in, renewable energy can be more affordable than non-renewable energy in many cases. This makes it important to shop around if you’re looking at buying renewable from a provider, as the rates can fluctuate.
Installing on-site renewable energy can be costly upfront, but over time can yield great savings. Installing your own renewable energy equipment, like solar or wind turbines, isn’t always possible however. Depending on the space available, you may only be able to set up some solar panels. These likely won’t provide 100% energy, but will still reduce your energy costs.
2. Stable pricing
Coal and natural gas supply are in a constant state of flux. This means the prices fluctuate too, making it difficult to plan ahead for energy costs.
Renewable energy is far more stable, meaning your energy costs can be predictable and secure. Not only can this allow for cost savings in some cases, but it makes budgeting more accurate.
3. More reliable
While stability isn’t always a given when purchasing off-site renewable energy, on-site renewable energy can be a great safety net in the event of a power outage.
For example, if a storm knocks out the electricity for a portion of the city, those with solar panels or wind power will likely be able to keep the lights on.
4. Renewable energy speaks volumes
Switching to renewable energy is easier than ever, but it still takes some effort. Putting forth the effort to switch, whether that’s purchasing energy or setting up on-site energy production, speaks volumes about the businesses that choose to do it.
If your hospital switches to renewable energy, you’re sending a clear message to your community that you care about them.
5. Renewable energy is healthier and safer
Hospitals are places of health and healing. The energy they use should match. Renewable energy is, simply put, safer and healthier than any non-renewable energy source.
Coal and natural gas both emit dangerous CO2, among other things. Nuclear power is low on emissions but poses a massive cancer risk for those involved and everyone around, especially in the event of a meltdown or spill. More importantly, all of the non-renewable energy sources are finite in nature and produce waste.
Renewable energy allows hospitals to reinforce everything they stand for: the health of the community.
A healthier future for hospitals and beyond
Non-renewable energy was the only option for a long time. Now, renewable is more readily available. Renewable energy is good for the planet, good for the people living on it, and good for hospitals. If you’re ready to make the switch to renewable energy, find a supplier in your city!