September 26, 2016

Cooley Dickinson earns Practice Greenhealth “Partner for Change” award

September 26, 2016

For immediate release: May 25, 2016

For the fourth consecutive year, Cooley Dickinson Health Care was awarded the Greenhealth Partner for Change award by Practice Greenhealth, the nation’s leading health care community dedicated to transforming health care worldwide so that it reduces its environmental footprint, becomes a community anchor for sustainability and a leader in the global movement for environmental health and justice.

The award is one of the organization’s Environmental Excellence Awards that is given each year to honor outstanding environmental achievements in the health care sector. The award recognizes health care facilities that continuously improve and expand upon their mercury elimination, waste reduction, recycling, and source reduction programs.

Among Cooley Dickinson’s recent environmentally friendly practices: At a minimum, facilities applying for this award must be recycling 15 percent of their total waste, have reduced regulated medical waste, are well along the way to mercury elimination, and have developed other successful pollution prevention programs in many different areas.

Cafeteria worker collecting food for composting, Cooley Dickinson Hospital, 30 Locust Street, Northampton, MA 01060.
Alyssa Pierce, a cafeteria worker at Cooley Dickinson Hospital, sorts food waste into composting bins. In 2015, Cooley Dickinson diverted nearly 100 tons of food waste and compostable packaging, plates, and cups from landfills to composting facilities.

• Recycled 30 tons or 60 percent of the construction waste during the construction of the Mass General Cancer Center at
Cooley Dickinson Hospital.

• Switched to a reusable tote delivery system for its medical and surgical supplies, which eliminated more than 35 tons of cardboard from its annual solid waste disposal stream and saved$3,200 per year on the cost of removing that waste.

• Diverted nearly 100 tons of food waste and compostable packaging, plates and cups from landfills to composting facilities.

• Since the mid-1980s, Cooley Dickinson has heated and cooled its facilities by burning woodchips in a dedicated boiler system. That boiler system produces steam for heating and cooling and through the process, electricity is generated as a byproduct of burning wood. For these reasons, the hospital has a relatively low greenhouse gas profile.
“As a Practice Greenhealth Partner for Change Award winner, Cooley Dickinson is committed to improving the health of our patients, staff, and community as a whole,” said Anthony Scibelli, vice president, operations & chief administrative officer.

“Cooley Dickinson’s employees take pride in our sustainability efforts to lessen our impact on the environment and look forward to working with Practice Greenhealth to continue this work across the country.”

The Practice Greenhealth Environmental Excellence Awards were presented May 19 in Dallas, Texas at the CleanMed Conference & Exhibition, a national environmental conference for leaders in health care sustainability.