“Plan, plan, plan” and “communicate with everyone.” That’s the advice healthcare company Kaiser Permanente is offering to businesses looking to switch to green power.
Green power contracts are long-term commitments with widespread implications, hence the need to plan well, Kaiser told the EPA Green Power Partnership‘s September program update. There is speculation and risk involved in these agreements, but, if managed correctly, your investment in green power will generate a consistent level of return, regardless of what is happening with energy rates at the moment, Kaiser says.
Communication with all the stakeholders is also vitally important. While preparing for an installation on one of its parking structures, the solar contractor had measured and marked out the future location of various components, according to Kaiser. But overnight maintenance crews painted over the marks, mistaking them for graffiti. A little communication can save time, money, and headaches.
Kaiser also says that it believes what is good for the environment is good for health. The company says that reducing its carbon emissions and mitigating the harmful effects of climate change on public health is a special responsibility as a health care provider. KP has committed to reducing its greenhouse gas emissions by 30 percent by 2020 (compared to 2008 levels). Pursuing renewable and clean energy sources is a significant part of its strategy for achieving that goal.
The Green Power Partnership is a voluntary program that helps to increase the use of green power among major US organizations. The program works with more than 1,000 organizations, including Fortune 500 companies, local, state, and federal government agencies, manufacturers and retailers, trade associations, and a growing number of colleges and universities. Partners are purchasing billions of KWh of green power annually, which has the equivalent impact of removing the emissions of hundreds of thousands of passenger cars from the road each year.