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Our Environment

Solar PV installation at St Vincent's Care Services Toowoomba

St Vincent’s Health Australia is committed to effectively managing our energy resources while reducing our impact on the environment. As we move into an era of increased energy cost across Australia, we face a challenging and complex task in reducing our carbon emissions while simultaneously growing our service footprint and without compromising our standards of care. However, thanks to the implementation of various energy efficiency projects across the organisation during 2017-18, our energy usage decreased to approximately 515,600 GJ, a 6 per cent drop from 2016-17.

Electricity-trend and actual usage

Reducing our emissions is another of our key environmental management priorities and the reduction of over 6,000 tonnes CO2e – our greenhouse gas emissions – is a key indicator we are on the right track.

St Vincent’s Health generated approximately 6009.89 tonnes of waste in 2017-18 with non-clinical or non-related waste making up 5016.23 tonnes at a total cost of $3,679,386.94 to the organisation.

This was a decrease of -1189.18 tonnes from the previous financial year, a decline primarily driven by reduced patient activity in our private division and a large number of facilities experiencing redevelopment.

National Energy Action Program

During 2017-18, St Vincent’s Health completed the first phase of our National Energy Action Program (NEAP) an organisational-wide plan to keep our energy costs down and reduce our carbon footprint.

Simultaneously rolling out multiple energy efficiency technologies across our sites in NSW, VIC and QLD – solar PV installation (PV stands for ‘photovoltaic’ – photovoltaic simply means the units in the solar panel convert sunlight into electricity), LED lighting, a ‘plug-smart’ system to improve the energy efficiency of lighting and other electrical equipment – has been a significant logistical achievement given the spread of our locations and the complexity of implementation in facilities that are operational 365 days a year.

With a projected annual reduction of 17,546,423 KWh (kilowatt hours) it’s a major achievement for St Vincent’s, particularly when compared to our electricity consumption in 2015-16.

Division Annual Saving KWh
Aged Care 2,507,467
Group 206,849
NWS Public 3,587,136
Private 5,884,967
Vic Public 5,360,003
Grand Total 17,546,423

Solar PV

Our commitment to generating clean energy is central to reducing our environmental impact. Having completed the installation of solar PV panels across our facilities – which provide 2,648 KW of our energy capacity – we are now starting to see the results.

During 2017-18, St Vincent’s Health generated more 3,238,565 KWh of clean energy.

The next step is installing a further 613 KW of clean energy capacity which is expected to be completed by early 2019. This will include the installation of a large 477 KW Solar PV system across both our co-located private hospital and aged care facility at Werribee.

KWh Generated