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Hospital board requesting more than $420,000 for Clearwater hospital upgrade

Heat pump loop and geo-exchange energy will reduce hospital operating costs, board says
The cost of installing heat pumps at Dr. Helmcken Memorial Hospital & Health Centre has risen due to inflation and construction market conditions, according to Interior Health. (Clearwater Times file photo)

The Interior Health Authority sent a request for $426,000 to the Thompson Regional Hospital District for the purpose of upgrading heating and cooling technology at the Dr. Helmcken Memorial Hospital & Health Centre.

Thompson Regional Hospital District reviewed the complete list of funding requests from Interior Health at its Jan. 20 board meeting.

According to Interior Health, the geo-exchange and loop heat pump upgrades at the hospital will “reduce operating costs and emissions, and provide better an more reliable service to the building.”

The hospital board budgeted $798,100 for these upgrades already, but inflation and construction market conditions have increased the cost, according to Interior Health. The estimated total cost of the renewable energy upgrade is now $1,065,000.

Geo-exchange heat pumps are also sometimes called ground source heat pumps. Heat pumps can cool or heat a building while producing fewer harmful greenhouse gas emissions than natural gas systems.

All requests for more than $100,000 are subject to government approval.

Minutes of the meeting are available on the hospital district’s website:

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About the Author: Morgana Adby, Local Journalism Initiative

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