With a carbon footprint of 21 million tonnes of CO2 equivalent (CO2e) and a large, ageing estate, few organisations in the country face as difficult a carbon challenge as the NHS. The budgetary pressure imposed on the public sector also impacts the NHS, so it is important that Trusts adopt tried and tested measures to tackle the dual challenge of cutting cost and carbon.
Calderstones Partnership NHS Foundation Trust provides community-based services along with medium and low-security in-patient care across the North West and Yorkshire. Such security requires 24/7 operations, so the Trust needed a robust technology with an unblemished reliability record.
It is now mandatory for all NHS Trusts to include sustainability as part of their annual reporting process. Such visibility is essential as the health service has set taxing targets of a reduction in carbon emissions of 10 per cent by 2015 and 80 per cent by 2050. Both will be a challenge, against a backdrop of a 40 per cent increase in carbon footprint between 1990 and 2009 – meaning the NHS now accounts for a quarter of all public sector carbon emissions in England.
The drive from within the NHS to reduce carbon has been tempered by a lack of capital following the government spending review. It means that taking a chance on the latest energy efficiency fad is no longer an option. Long paybacks and costly maintenance contracts are to be avoided.
A powerPerfector unit was installed at Calderstones Partnership NHS Foundation Trust in April 2010. The 500A VPO® unit covers the entire power requirements for the site and allows for future expansion.
The biggest challenge for any installation on the mains incomer is ensuring that the power supply is maintained at hospital sites while voltage power optimisation units are installed. This can be accomplished by operating back-up generators onsite or arranging for mobile generation to be brought onsite while final connections are made.
The trial unit has since been followed up with another three units so that adoption of VPO® into all suitable supplies across the Trust’s estate is now complete. Analysis shows that VPO® is helping the Trust reduce its electricity costs by 11.2% every year and will continue to make significant savings across the 50-year life cycle of the VPO® units.
With nearly 90 units installed into NHS sites, we can say with confidence that our VPO® units work seamlessly with specialist equipment. Our team of field engineers are trained to inspect and evaluate the effect of optimised voltage on specialist equipment.
Sensitive electronic equipment, such as operating systems for MRI and CT scanners, can also be protected by the power quality improvements afforded by the units which reduces equipment maintenance and replacement costs.