Bluewater Health Developing Combined Heat and Power Plant

Wednesday, June 26, 2019 - 2:54pm

Project to achieve significant utility cost savings

SARNIA & PETROLIA – June 26, 2019 – Today Transform Shared Service Organization, on behalf of Bluewater Health, issued a Request for Proposal (RFP) for a project to fill a substantial portion of the Sarnia hospital’s ongoing energy needs. The project, posted on the government contract portal, involves a combined heat and power plant (CHP) to produce electricity from a natural gas-fired engine. The plant will reduce electricity costs while also capturing the heat by-product of the engine to re-use within the boiler plant.

A feasibility study determined the future plant’s optimal capacity to be 800 KWH, which would supply approximately 60% of the Sarnia hospital’s power needs. The project is expected to deliver savings of over $500,000 annually based on a conservative estimate of utility costs over the next 15 years. With the rising costs of electricity, the project’s savings will come not only through lower costs on the power produced, but also through direct energy use reductions. Heat recovered from the plant’s internal combustion engine will not be released into the air as ‘waste,’ but instead used within the facility’s boiler plant, thereby avoiding the additional use of existing boilers and fuel. While this is a new energy source, it creates clean and efficient power, and avoids the energy loss that occurs during delivery from Ontario’s electrical grid.

Savings will be applied to financing daily operations of the hospital, or increasing its working capital, while maintaining a manageable debt load. An application for an incentive of $1.2 million toward the project was approved by Ontario’s Independent Electrical System Operator (IESO) and Bluewater Health has entered into a contract for the incentive with Bluewater Power.

“Bluewater Health has long been recognized in the healthcare sector for its leadership in environmental initiatives,” says Samer Abou-Sweid, Vice President, Operations. “This is another example of forward thinking that contributes to the hospital’s financial health while also reducing our ecological footprint.”
The RFP issued today seeks bids for engineering services and closes July 24, 2019. The location of the combined heat and power plant has not been decided, and will be determined during the engineering phase of the project. A second RFP for the build and installation portions of the project will be posted in the fall. The project is expected to be completed by December 1, 2020.

Bluewater Health, with locations in Sarnia and Petrolia, cares for the residents of Sarnia-Lambton. With close to 2,500 staff, Professional Staff and volunteers, Bluewater Health provides an array of specialized acute, complex continuing care, allied health and ambulatory care services. Bluewater Health’s Mission is: We create exemplary healthcare experiences with patients and families every time. For more information about Bluewater Health, visit or follow us on Facebook, Instagram, LinkedIn, Twitter and YouTube.


For more information contact:
Birgit Lacey
Communications Business Partner, Communications & Public Affairs
Bluewater Health

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