Solar Power for Iconic adelaide hospital outshines expectations

When Burnside Hospital, Adelaide’s iconic and not-for-profit community healthcare provider, aimed to become more sustainable whilst also creating a better and more comfortable environment for patients, they chose to reduce their carbon footprint by switching to solar and installing energy efficient LED lights.

In 2018, Verdia worked with Burnside Hospital to install more than 500 solar panels (157kW) across the 93-bed facility, with the sizing of the system limited by available roof area. Over 1,000 interior lights were replaced with efficient LED fixtures in clinical areas, support service areas and patient rooms throughout the hospital. The lights are not only energy efficient, but they also provide patients and staff with a softer and more natural hue for the comfort of bedridden patients.

Since installation, the hospital’s asset performance results have been outstanding. The system was modelled to generate almost 211,000kWh of power in its first year but our ongoing performance reports demonstrate that it has actually produced 228,000kWh, equivalent to $43,000 in savings. In fact, since its installation in 2018, the solar PV system at Burnside Hospital has generated over 50,000kWh more power than anticipated.

During the first year after installation, solar PV self-consumption (green bars in the graph below) accounted for a 10.4% reduction in energy usage compared to pre-solar statistics. Data indicates that the hospital’s original grid electricity use (dark blue bars) decreased by 18.7% compared to pre-solar and pre-LED grid consumption (red bars in the graph below).

Our asset performance reports also highlighted that the site’s overnight baseload has increased (see dark blue curve in graph below) compared to the baseline or reference period (red curve), which indicates that some of the energy efficiency benefits are being masked by increased site activity overnight. The hospital’s facility management team is investigating further in order to identify potential additional efficiencies to reduce the overnight consumption where practical.

The hospital’s LED lighting energy savings amount to nearly 300,000kWh (or ~$60,000) and have reduced lighting maintenance costs to $0 p.a. since installation.

Total emissions reductions by installing solar PV and energy efficient LED lights exceed 300 tonnes which is the equivalent of taking 168 cars off the road or the carbon sequestered by 412 hectares of forest.

Verdia is proud to be helping the healthcare industry switch to greener solutions to save on energy bills, reduce their carbon footprint and improve patient, staff and visitor comfort.

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