Aspirus Health continues sustainability and green initiatives

Aspirus Health celebrates Global Recycling Day (March 18), joining communities, businesses and individuals across the world in showcasing the important role recycling plays in preserving the future of our planet.

Global Recycling Day, now in its seventh year, aims to encourage the world to remember that recycled commodities are a resource and not waste.

The United States Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) states that recyclable materials such as paper, bottles and cans, cardboard, and plastics generally make up at least 50 percent of a hospital’s waste. Aspirus Health incorporates recycling into everyday business across its footprint spanning from the Upper Peninsula of Michigan to Portage in Southern Wisconsin.

The health system has implemented dozens of recycling initiatives including the recycling and reuse of paper products, batteries, pill bottles, cans, bottles, plastics, construction materials and more. Other earth-friendly programs implemented by Aspirus Health include the introduction of electric and hybrid vehicles to its fleets; installation of LED lighting and rooftop solar panels; adoption of meatless meals and vertical hydroponic gardens; use of environmentally friendly cleaning products; and implementation of green building design, sustainable materials and construction.

“Everyone can take responsibility to create their own recycling habits, no matter how big or small,” said Lindsay Jenson, Talent Delivery Partner and Green Team Co-chair at Aspirus Keweenaw.

Aspirus Health began its Aspirus Sustainability Initiative in 2018. Among its goals is to reduce the health system’s carbon footprint by 80 percent (36,000 metric tons) and its energy costs by 50 percent ($4 million) by 2030, and to be a leader within Practice Greenhealth, the nation’s leading organization dedicated to climate smart healthcare practices.

Aspirus Keweenaw’s Green Team is made up of 10 team members with representation from various departments at the hospital and clinics. The Green Team has taken the lead in adding recycling containers and a recycling dumpster as well as in offering employee recycling days where employees can bring items in from home.

“Separating our waste is one of the easiest things we can do to be a more green and sustainable organization,” said Mariah Maggio, Patient Experience Coordinator and Green Team Co-chair at Aspirus Keweenaw.

As a leader in the communities it serves, Aspirus Health is committed to being economically, socially and environmentally responsible.