The facilities at Kuakini Medical Center were in need of critical care. The chillers had reached the end of their useful life, and other energy efficiency upgrades were needed to improve sustainability and ensure the comfort of the hospital’s patients. Unable to incur new debt, Kuakini sought a financing solution with no upfront cost. Metrus Energy provided the cure.
Kuakini Medical Center was eager to upgrade its facilities, reduce energy consumption, and save money while making a number of key upgrades to critical equipment. The new equipment would remove down-time risk, provide system redundancy for safety, and create a brighter, more comfortable patient environment. But to achieve its goals, Kuakini needed an innovative financial approach.
Kuakini partnered with Metrus to develop and finance the first efficiency project of its kind in Hawai’i, using a Metrus Sustainable Energy Services Agreement (SESA). Metrus paid for 100% of the project design and implementation costs through its SESA financing structure, enabling Kuakini to avoid upfront project costs and receive the immediate economic, operational and environmental benefits of an energy efficiency project with minimal disruption to hospital operations.
The project began operation in September 2014 and is generating over $1.1 million in annual savings while reducing electricity consumption by 3.46 million kWh per year. The Kuakini project continues to deliver significant economic and environmental value to the hospital. From an operational perspective, the higher efficiency cooling systems increase patient comfort but also help Kuakini exceed requirements set forth by the Joint Commission (on healthcare) for humidity and temperature levels in sterile and clean areas and operating rooms. Patients and staff also comment on the improved lighting throughout the hospital.
In addition, during the SESA term a series of new LED lighting upgrades were rolled into the project that added 398,000 kWh of savings to the project and an additional $87,000 annual savings for the hospital. The ability of the SESA to seamlessly incorporate additions and extensions to the original project scope is a key feature of the financing arrangement.
“Metrus handles the financial and technical issues of making our hospital more energy efficient, allowing us to focus on providing high-quality patient care.”
— Gregg Oishi, Chief Financial Officer, Kuakini Medical Center