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St. Helena Announces Earth-Friendly Changes


Media Contact:

Peggy Dixon, (707)-963-6545

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: Thursday, April 21, 2011

St. Helena Announces Earth-Friendly Changes

New green technology implemented

April 21, 2011 (St. Helena, California) – In keeping with a clean and greener facility, St. Helena Hospital today announced several new changes in its facility in Napa Valley, California.

As part of a new composting initiative, all food waste and coffee grounds are being taken to a compost processing facility and turned into rich soil for gardening and viticulture (grape growing) in the area. 

This process reduces waste by an estimated 500 pounds of food scraps per day, reducing the load on the sewer treatment plant, reducing the need to clear plumbing lines that get clogged with food scrap material and saves many thousands of dollars per year. In addition, by reducing the use of garbage disposals, the hospital saves electricity and huge volumes of water, which also eases the strain on the sewer treatment plant and saves valuable resources.

As a part of a recent campus wide initiative to update all patient areas, our new energy-saving windows will replace outdated windows to save on heating and air conditioning. This is one of many commitments by St. Helena Hospital Napa Valley’s “Project Transformation" to preserving the environment while maintaining its whole-person approach to patient care.

Several months ago, St. Helena is now being powered by a 400 kilowatt fuel cell from UTC Power, a United Technologies Corp. company. The PureCell Model 400 System meets 63 percent of the hospital's electricity needs and its byproduct thermal energy is being used for hot water and space heating for three of the hospital's buildings. The system is a combined heat and cooling system that will help the hospital reduce its energy costs, increase its operational reliability and contribute to a cleaner environment.

By generating most of its power on site with a fuel cell, St. Helena Hospital is also able to reduce the burden on the local power grid and save more than 500,000 gallons of water. The reduction of nitrogen oxide emission compared to a conventional power plant is equal to removing 115 cars from the road.

About St. Helena Hospital: With its many innovative wellness programs and other top quality healthcare services, including the Martin-O’Neil Cancer Center and Coon Joint Replacement Institute, St. Helena Hospital is one of the nation’s premier healthcare destinations. The Napa Valley based hospital serves its local communities with comprehensive medical care, including cancer, cardiovascular and behavioral health.