Green Building Design

The Health System continues to work to integrate sustainable practices in the design and construction of capital projects, evidenced by the four green building projects in various phases of construction that are seeking LEED certification.

  • ASB School of Nursing – nearing completion. Anticipate LEED Commercial Interiors Gold certification being awarded in Fall 2016.
  • Midtown MOB – substantially complete. Anticipate LEED Commercial Interiors Gold certification being awarded in Fall 2016.
  • Betty Irene Moore Hall – under construction. Pursuing LEED New Construction Platinum
  • North Addition Office Building – in design. Pursuing LEED New Construction Platinum
  • An initiative was established to provide training to staff who wished to pursue the LEED Green Associate exam. Of the five who signed up, one took (and passed) the exam.


Clean Energy

Solar Power

A project was initiated to evaluate the viability of installing solar photovoltaic panels throughout the Medical Center campus. This report was circulated internally for review and with SMUD and UCOP Energy Services.  Both the energy consultancy and the UCOP Energy Services Unit agreed that the low cost of operating the Medical Center Central Energy Plant made large-scale solar PV installations financially unviable. SMUD acknowledged this recommendation and has proposed that the Med Center consider engaging in their Greenergy initiative. (see “Utility Green Energy”, below)


Lighting Improvements

Several lighting retrofit projects are either under study or underway. Among the latter is the ACC Cardiology Lighting retrofit project, which will replace fluorescent lighting with LEDs.  In addition, Cap and Trade funds have been requested for lighting retrofit projects at Broadway Building, Parking Structure II, and Parking Lots 4 and 18.


Utility Metering

The effort to update utility meters and move Metasys utility data to a better server is almost complete. Once this is done, and API software is approved, utility data for all on- and off-site facilities will be uploaded to EPA Energy Star Portfolio Manager (ESPM), which permits tracking of energy use and comparisons against benchmarks.  It is anticipated that all building energy data will eventually be fed to the energy dashboard program developed by campus, permitting real-time observation of building energy use.


Utility Green Energy

Several members participated in an evaluation of Renewable Energy Credits, assisted by the UCOP Energy Services Unit’s Mark Byron. This resulted in an initiative that led to participation in SMUD’s Greenergy program, which will provide renewable energy to approximately 30 offsite facilities beginning in Summer 2017.  Additional locations will be considered for future participation.


Climate Protection

The Medical Center continues to wrestle with the UC Carbon Neutrality Initiative (CNI). A revisit of the Utility Master Plan, with an eye toward the CNI, will be initiated in Fall 2016.  Central to the challenge is the Central Energy Plant and the microgrid that it serves.  While this is an efficient and reliable system, its continued operation is at odds with the goal of the CNI. The Med Center and Campus will work together to update the UCD Climate Action Plan.


Sustainable Transportation

Sarah Janus continues to advocate for the Alternative Transportation program at every opportunity, gradually increasing the number of program participants. The Alternative Transportation program is essential to reduce the impact of parking costs for the Med Center as new projects are considered.

The Zipcar car share program came to the Med Center in January, with two cars located in Lot 20 and two located in the Emergency Department lot.


Recycling and Waste Mgmt

In the red bag waste arena, many years’ efforts finally came to fruition with the launch of the Stericycle Reusable Sharps Container program in all patient care areas, eliminating single-use sharps containers. To make the handling and management of recyclables safer and more reasonable, a dedicated cart tipper and self-contained compactor just for recyclables was installed on the Back Dock.


Environmentally Preferable Purchasing

Materiel Management’s first order of business is to cut costs, which creates challenges in transitioning to greener products. However, there have been successes in utilizing reprocessed single-use medical devices such as pulse-ox probes and Hovermats.  OR packs have been reviewed to minimize the inclusion of products that are rarely used.


The requirement to specify Energy Star-rated appliances permitted maximizing applicable LEED credits for the Midtown MOB, and attaining just below maximum credits for the ASB School of Nursing project.

Sustainable Foodservices

All four water-wasting steamers that came with the Pavilions kitchen have now been replaced with boilerless units. As various lighting system reach the end of their service life, they are replace with LED lighting.


F&NS is looking at ways to combine purchases with other UC medical centers in an effort to make sustainable food purchases more cost-effective. With this, F&NS is looking to bring in antibiotic-free poultry and grass-fed beef, but both are more expensive than conventional items.F&NS continues to close in on the policy goal of 20% sustainable food purchases, with the most recent FY clocking in at over 19%.


Sustainable Water Systems

A project to divert condensate water from the Central Plant condensate skid is complete, and will save about 2 million gallons/year. A project is in review to replace two med gas ring pumps which have single pass cooling. Savings are estimated at 6-10 million gallons/year.


An investigation was initiated to study use of cooling tower blowdown water, which currently goes to sewer, for landscape irrigation. The study identified overriding costs and regulatory constraints that made the project infeasible at this time.


Turf grass has been removed at the X/48th roundabout, and in the median north of ACC.  A project to replace turf grass at The Ellipse with artificial turf and drought tolerant landscaping has been recently completed. Landscape designs for North Addition and Moore Hall include drought tolerant landscape design concepts.