Report highlights CHP as huge energy-saving opportunity for NHS
Combined heat and power (CHP) provides the biggest energy-saving opportunity for the NHS, amounting to £26.4 million a year, according to the ‘Securing healthy returns’ report, which analyses the financial value of key sustainability measures in the NHS.
The report analyses 35 proven measures that it says could achieve a total £400 million of cost savings and reduce carbon emissions by a million tonnes every year by 2020. These interventions were selected because they are supported by robust data and evidence to enable analysis and scaling.
Of the 18 energy-saving measures covered in the report, CHP provides the highest potential cost savings (£26.4 million), followed by staff energy awareness and behaviour change (£21.5 million), high-efficiency lighting (£7.2 million) and reducing temperature set points by 1 K (£6.2 million).
Chris Marsland, technical director for CHP specialist Ener-G Cogen International, said, ‘Due to the 24/7 heat demand of acute hospitals, CHP can operate at efficiencies in excess of 85% — more than double that of other coal and gas-fired generation sources the Department of Energy & Climate Change’s half-hourly modelling shows it displaces.
‘As such, the cost and carbon savings really stack u,p and more hospital should specify CHP to provide assured cost and carbon savings long into the next decade and beyond.’
One of the early adopters of CHP was the Heart of England NHS Foundation Trust, which partnered with Ener-G to introduce the technology to its Birmingham Heartlands Hospital (pictured) and Solihull Hospital. CHP is achieving significant energy and operational-cost savings — guaranteed by Ener-G, which funded the capital programme over a 15-year contract.
CHP is also at the heart of a recent upgrade of two hospitals of the East Cheshire NHS Trust. Utilising the Carbon & Energy Fund framework, the trust has partnered with Ener-G to deliver CHP and associated energy-efficiency improvements that will generate guaranteed cost savings of £2.5 million over 15 years.