What’s both central to the HVAC system and a large consumer of energy costs for your facility? The Air Handling Unit (or AHU). Air Handling Units condition and circulate air in a building or facility as part of the heating, ventilating, and air-conditioning (HVAC) system. AHUs work hard and constantly to maintain a comfortable building environment. If the building is to remain comfortable, the air handlers need to operate without issue. We frequently see AHUs that are 25-50+ years old, are still in service and don’t always run as well as they did at the beginning of their life.
Three affiliated hospitals in Connecticut have recently qualified for over $3,200,000 of electric and gas utility incentives. The energy efficiency project that achieved these numbers resulted in just a 2-year payback. To get to this point however, those affiliated hospitals needed to understand the complexities of the state’s utility incentive programs to find the most benefit.
According to the U.S. Department of Energy, healthcare is one of the top five energy-consuming building categories and accounts for nine percent of energy use in commercial buildings. With utility bills making up an average of 1.4 percent of a hospital’s operating revenue, hospitals in the U.S spend about $8.3 billion total on energy costs each year.
This blog post is an excerpt from "The Missed Investment: How College and University Endowment Funds Can Achieve the Highest and Safest Return" by Peter Fairbanks, President of Fairbanks Energy Services.
In the last 3-4 years there has been a significant movement to invest in green improvements on college and university campuses. Being among the most energy-intensive property types in the world, there are numerous opportunities for efficiency projects that address lighting, building system controls, chilled water systems, steam systems and more that have simple paybacks after utility incentives of about 2 to 3 years. Implementing these solutions will help campuses reduce their overall carbon footprint, lower energy costs, and promote a sustainable future in surrounding communities.
Peter Fairbanks, President of Fairbanks Energy, authored a piece published in the Boston Business Journal on investing in efficiency improvements at college and university campuses. Read the piece below: