Kingston General Hospital

Energy upgrades lead to increased investment in patient care at Kingston General Hospital.

Kingston General Hospital (KGH) is more than just a reputable medical facility serving a catchment of nearly half a million people, it’s a whole community dedicated to transforming the patient and family experience through innovative approaches to care, knowledge and leadership.

KGH is southeastern Ontario’s leading centre for complex-acute and specialty care and finding ways to save on operating costs in order to invest in providing better services to patients is part of the hospital’s ongoing mandate. So when the opportunity to implement energy efficient measures through Save on Energy incentives presented itself, KGH didn’t hesitate.

First steps to saving energy

The hospital began working closely with Kingston Hydro to implement its retrofit projects in early 2011. The hydro company's role was to help ensure the entire process went smoothly — from helping to complete the application forms according to Save on Energy rules, to bringing in experts to look at project ideas and providing constructive feedback about the work. “We are very impressed with Kingston Hydro,” says Allan McLuskie, Director Facilities Management. “Their support made for a great partnership.”


The upgrades

The scope of the work involved six main project components: utilities, electricity, water, heating and cooling, building envelope and aging equipment. 

  • Over 10,000 light fixtures were retrofitted with new ballasts and fluorescent tubes, upgrading them from T12 to T8 technology;
  • HVAC units and pumps were fitted with new high-efficiency electric motors and variable frequency drives, which allowed the building automation system to optimize plant equipment during unoccupied times;
  • Building automation systems were re-commissioned to optimize indoor/outdoor conditions to adjust the building’s heating and cooling load. This allowed for the automated HVAC system temperature setbacks and scheduling of HVAC;
  • Seven new air handling systems were installed with new building control systems in the Labour and Delivery area, some operating rooms and on two medical floors. (This initiative alone generates more than $100,000 in savings per year.);
  • Insulation improvements were made to the steam and condensate piping in the plant as well as to all steam traps;
  • Cracks were sealed and weatherstripping was installed around the windows and doors of the older buildings, providing improved comfort for staff;
  • New windows were installed in an area of the hospital that dates back to the early 1800s. This initiative had a major impact on occupancy comfort and winter heating loads.

The savings goal

“Our savings goal was $760,000 per year based on a $7.6 million energy project,” says Allan. “We used an Energy Service Company (ESCO) to help audit, design and implement the measures. Our contract with ESCO guarantees the savings or they will write us a cheque for the shortfall. The measurements to verify the savings are still in progress but we are already seeing significantly lower energy and water bills.”

We have been able to divert hundreds of thousands of dollars into patient care programs and essential equipment for our patients since these projects were implemented.
Chris Rousseau, Manager Maintenance Planning, Infrastructure Projects & Quality Assurance

Investing in patient care

“We have been able to divert hundreds of thousands of dollars into patient care programs and essential equipment for our patients since these projects were implemented,” says Chris Rousseau, Manager Maintenance Planning, Infrastructure Projects & Quality Assurance. “Also, we’ve been training the technical staff, orienting the general KGH staff to our energy efficiency projects, building awareness through events and hosting departmental energy challenges.” And, with no time to waste, the team at KGH is already moving forward with Phase 2 for which they are expecting incentives of approximately $113,000.