Environmental initiatives

Mission is working to protect the environment and to provide environmentally friendly services and facilities for our patients, visitors, and staff.  Below are some of the things being done in just a few departments.

Expanding our Fleet of Alternative Fuel Vehicles

Mission uses several types of alternative fuel vehicles that have less impact on the environment than traditional gasoline vehicles. Our fleet includes:

  • 8 CNG Honda Civic GXs
  • 1 hybrid Ford Escape
  • 3 GEM electric vehicles

Our Facilities: Going Green when we plan, build and renovate

Mission is finding ways to "go green" when we plan and build new facilities and renovate the ones we have. The use of environmentally-friendly materials benefits our patients, visitors, and staff, while it minimizes our impact on the environment and the surrounding community.  We strive to:

  • Choose materials with minimal impact on the environment, such as locally quarried stone and locally produced brick. 
  • Use materials that can be easily maintained without harmful chemicals.
  • Meet or exceed the building code for energy utilization when we construct new facilities.
  • Understand the impact of the quality of light and air in a building on patient healing and employee productivity, absenteeism and retention.  
  • Pursue the standards of LEED certification - Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design - in new construction. 

Operations and Maintenance

Mission, like all hospitals, consumes a great deal of energy due to our size, 24-7 operation, and specialized heating and cooling requirements for different spaces. To address this challenge, we commissioned the Preliminary Energy Assessment in 1996, and carried out a number of energy conservation opportunities that were identified.  

We now use 23% less energy on utilities than 1996. Our goal is to further reduce our energy consumption by 30 to 35% by 2020. Mission has: 

  • Upgraded with energy-efficient lighting technologies that dramatically reduce energy consumption while delivering the same or better quality lighting
  • Replaced fluorescent bulbs with more efficient electronic ballast and bulb reducing energy consumption by 30%.
  • Placing LED fixtures in all EXIT signs, reducing energy consumption by 60%. 
  • Use "Soft Start" devices that let motors start slowly instead of with a sudden, power-consuming surge.
  • Painted parking decks with a waterproofing white sealant allowing for better lighting in the parking decks and reducing the need for higher wattage bulbs

Environmental Services (Housekeeping)

Environmental Services is managed by ARAMARK Company, which is a member of the U.S Green Building Council and partners with Energy Star, Environmental Choice, and the U.S. EPA Design for the Environment.  ARAMARK partners with various manufacturers to provide a variety of environmentally friendly products.

Energy-conserving measures include:

  • Use of reusable mops and micro-fiber pads. These are available through the Cooperative Laundry Service.
  • Use of enMotion paper towels and dispensers. The enMotion system uses 25% less paper that traditional towels.
  • Use of toilet tissue with 20% post-consumer recycled fiber. 
  • Recycling of all hospital cardboard.
  • Shredding and recycling of all hospital confidential paper documents
  • Use of Green Seal approved cleaning products to reduce toxic pollution and ozone depletion
  • Use Tennant Green Cleaning Product Line for 70% reduction of water

Laundry Services

The Laundry department began making changes in 1992 in efforts to maintain a more environmentally friendly process. 

  •  A home washer uses about five gallons of water per pound of laundry, our machines use about one.
  •  A water reuse system allows for laundry equipment and setup to continuously recycle water.   
  •  Environmentally friendly bleach
  •  Work closely with the Metropolitan Sewage district to ensure compliance with our effluent as it relates  to  pH and temperature
  •  Worn out textiles are recycled by providing them to various charities.  
  •  Plastic laundry bags are used, bailed after use, melted down, and made into new ones.
  •  A low pH, low temperature wash process was implemented in September 2008.  This will reduce energy demand, water use and the pH of sewer effluent, resulting in a more energy conscience process with reduced environmental impact. This is accomplished through the use of enzymes reducing the need for sodium hydroxide.

Food and Nutrition

Food and Nutrition is continually making efforts to supporting a greener environment, and it is now becoming a reality. Mission Hospitals will be one of the leaders in North Carolina Healthcare settings to make this transition.

  • Food and Nutrition Services receives fat containers to discard deep fat fryer oils from Blue Ridge Bio Fuels.  This, in turn, is used to produce Bio Fuel. 
  • Large aluminum food cans and plastic containers used for food production are recycled.   
  • Both Mission Café 509 and 428 utilize china and silverware to help the cause to reduce disposables.
  • As of October 2008, ARAMARK environmentally friendly brown Grab and Go Green Bags are available to purchase at our registers in Café 509 and Café 428. (The bags are made from recycled materials)
  • As of September 2008, Food and Nutrition has switched from foam takeout containers to Environware © BIODEGRADABLE containers.