City Hospitals in Sunderland, north-eastern UK is to cut carbon emissions and energy costs with a new 1.55 MW CHP system from UK-based cogeneration specialist ENER-G.

The hospital is targeted to recover the £600,000 capital cost of its new CHP system in less than three years. The Trust has also installed three high efficiency water boilers, replacing old steam boilers. The entire installation will make carbon savings of approximately 3400 tonnes per year.

The new system, which replaces a gas turbine powered CHP unit also supplied by ENER-G 16 years ago, is among the first installations in Europe by ENER-G of its new 1.55 MW MTU unit powered by a natural gas engine. The MTU reciprocating unit develops 1550 kWe, compared to the 1050 kWe output of the hospital’s previous gas turbine engine. The outgoing gas turbine power unit has enabled carbon savings of around 30,000 tonnes over 16-years.

This latest project follows the installation by ENER-G of CHP systems at major hospitals including Birmingham Heartlands, Solihull Hospital and the Royal Shrewsbury.

As Europe’s biggest employer, the NHS contributes approximately 3% of England’s total carbon dioxide emissions, so there is a powerful need to implement effective carbon abatement strategies like CHP. A political mandate has now been set through proposals for a new Carbon Reduction Strategy that commits the service as a whole to reducing emissions by 60% by 2050. The potential for CHP use in the NHS is huge.