Sustainability & Recycling - Energy Conservation
Responsibly managing energy and water at the Medical University of South Carolina not only reduces our environmental impact, but also saves money which can be used throughout the enterprise to support our goal of improving all of the lives we touch. By doing our part to reduce our environmental impact, we are also reducing climate change's impact on human health.
What MUSC Is Doing to Save Energy & Water
Performance contracts ($2.5M in annual savings) — This is an innovative financing technique that uses cost savings from reduced energy and water consumption to repay the cost of installing energy and water conservation measures. Started in 2009, MUSC began its first performance contract using an outside vendor to recommend and implement savings measures. Improvements in lighting equipment, controls, water conservation, energy management strategies, fume hoods, and steam system improvements resulted in $2.5M in annual saving. Learn more about the 2009 Energy Performance Contract. MUSC is currently in-process on another performance contract with more information to come.
In-house energy projects — Smaller projects undergone by MUSC shops and departments help reduce energy usage. For example, MUSC Electric Shop used a $2,200 SCE&G Grant to change to more efficient LED lights in the Strom Thurmond buidling, resulting in $3,024 annual energy savings and less maintenance per unit.
Green building — The BioEngineering and Drug Discovery Buildings are LEED Gold Facilities. The MUSC Shawn Jenkins Children’s Hospital and Pearl Tourville Women’s Pavilion being built is anticipated to be LEED Silver Certified. See more under the Green Building Section.
Landscaping —The MUSC Grounds Department has made great strides in reducing water usage across campus. Some efforts include: smart watering systems using sensors and timers, watering at night, native and drought hardy species, rain gardens, bioswales, and "drains to ocean” markers.
What You Can Do to Save Energy & Water
Turn Off and Unplug — Turn off items below when not in use, during weekends, and when on vacation. Unplug items or turn off with a power strip to avoid phantom energy consumption:
- Overhead lights
- Printers / copiers
- Coffee pots
- Other equipment
Keep Your Thermostat at a Regular Temperature
- A 74° summertime setting is recommended as a comfortable temperature during the summer months.
- A 68° winter setting is recommended as a comfortable temperature during the winter months.
- Turn off water while washing your hands.
- Report leaky faucets and toilets to the helpdesk: 843-792-4119
- Know and follow hazardous waste disposal protocols! Contact MUSC Safety: 843-792-3604
Spread the Word & Learn
- To schedule a 15-minute training for your staff, email firstname.lastname@example.org.
- Encourage your colleagues to save energy by turning off and unplugging equipment and lights when not needed.
- Learn about best practices and upgrade old equipment to more energy-efficient equipment.
- Request light switch stickers.
- Print the Holiday Energy Checklist (PDF) before the holiday break and post it on the door
- Labs - Participate in the North American Freezer Challenge. Ultra-low temperature freezers use as much energy as single family home.