UW Health working to elevate priority put on renewables

Maximilian Christman, sustainability specialist for UW Health, says the health system is working to elevate the priority put on renewable energy.

UW Health encompasses six hospitals and over 70 clinics, with more than 18,000 employees in total.

Christman says a recent survey of community groups and stakeholders — staff, patients, faculty, medical students and residents — showed three top priorities: waste, green chemicals and renewable energy.

As of now, the system doesn’t run on any renewables — other than geothermal energy for the office building where Christman works. But he tells WisBusiness.com that UW Health is “consistently pushing utilities” on this issue.

He says barriers to the system adopting renewables come from policymakers as well as utilities.

“We’re trying to respond in kind to what we’re hearing from our audiences, and we’re pushing but it’s going to be a slow drive for sure,” he said. “We can’t just put this at the feet of the [Public Service Commission]… We have to get our leadership to buy in on this.”

See more at WisBusiness.com.