Boulder Community Health understands that environmental health—clean
air, water and soil—is ultimately linked to human health. As a community-owned,
nonprofit health care organization, we consider it our responsibility
to reduce the environmental impact of our operations. Our ongoing goals
are to reduce our waste stream, increase our use of renewable energy and
implement sustainable practices wherever possible.
We’ve been fortunate to positively impact the health care industry
worldwide. We opened Foothills Hospital—the first health care facility
in the U.S. to attain prestigious LEED (Leadership in Energy and Environmental
Design) certification in 2003. Three years later, we received the Environmental
Leadership Award from Hospitals for a Healthy Environment, recognition
of our ongoing commitment to be an environmentally responsive citizen.
Through collaboration with our employees and our partners, BCH continually
strives to improve and set even higher goals. Here are some sustainability
Our sustainability values grew from our community. Concerned citizens at BCH—doctors, nurses, janitors, cafeteria workers—began
informally reducing, reusing and recycling in 1990. In 1995, our Board
of Directors adopted an Environmental Impact Plan to guide our efforts.
Foothills Hospital: The first U.S. hospital to earn environmental (LEED)
certification. In 2003, Foothills Hospital became the health care facility in the U.S.
to attain LEED (Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design) certification.
This national green-building program fosters the development of high-performance
sustainable buildings. At Foothills, that meant a highly efficient power
plant, energy-efficient lighting, and conserving water. In 2006, we worked
with local partner Namaste Solar to install the first roof-top solar system
on a U.S. hospital, and continue to add solar to new buildings.
BCH strives toward zero waste. Longtime local partner Eco-Cycle has helped BCH achieve a waste-reduction
rate of 52 percent through initiatives like composting. We credit our
sustainability program with $1 million in annual cost savings and cost
We have donated more than $2 million in medical equipment to developing
countries since 2004. Local nonprofit Project C.U.R.E distributes desperately needed medical
equipment to clinics worldwide. One of BCH’s major donations was
a complete Cardiac Catheterization Lab that went to a children’s
hospital in Ethiopia.
BCH encourages suppliers to deliver more sustainable products. BCH actively helped Vizient, a group purchasing organization that works
with U.S. health care organizations, develop an environmental advisory
committee to come up with more sustainable manufacturing processes.
All employees get a free RTD Eco-Pass. BCH was the first Denver-metro-area employer to provide this benefit, which
makes it free or very low-cost for employees to commute via public transportation.
BCH encourages suppliers to deliver more sustainable products. BCH actively
helped Vizient, a group purchasing organization that works with U.S. health
care organizations, develop an environmental advisory committee to come
up with more sustainable manufacturing processes.