WASHINGTON - The U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) has launched the EnergySmart Hospitals initiative, with the aim of increasing the use of energy efficient technologies in hospitals across the United States.

The EnergySmart Hospital initiative will provide hospitals with design strategies, advanced energy design guides, technology assessments, case studies, training sessions, and an interactive Website to help hospitals increase their energy efficiency. The initiative intends to improve energy efficiency in existing hospitals by 20 percent and to help develop new hospitals that are 30 percent more efficient than current building standards. It will also support hospitals in meeting the challenge of lowering costs while delivering quality patient care and maintaining healthy healing and work environments.

The nation’s 8,000 hospitals are among the most energy intensive commercial buildings in the United States, with more than 2.5 times the energy intensity and carbon dioxide emissions of commercial office buildings. Last year, hospitals spent more than $5 billion on energy. Unlike many other commercial buildings, hospitals must remain fully operational 24 hours a day, seven days a week, and provide services during power outages, natural disasters, and other events that would force other facilities to close.

For more information, visit the EnergySmart Hospitals Website at www.eere.energy.gov/buildings/energysmarthospitals/.

Publication date:08/04/2008