Being Green

A Category Archive

Saving Trees is Second Nature

A tree is a terrible thing to waste. Jeff Hughes, grounds and sustainability manager at Seattle Children’s, is constantly saving or recycling trees displaced by construction around our campus. The latest example: six trees that must be removed from the median on Sand Pont Way NE near 40th Avenue NE where we’re installing a new traffic light and bike/pedestrian crossing. 

Hughes will dig up three cedar trees and replant them in a nearby site on our campus. Three pin oaks, which wouldn’t survive being transplanted, will be cut down but their wood will be saved to create benches.  Read full post »

A Commitment to Safer, Healthier Streets

Guest Blog with Paulo Nunes-Ueno, Director of  Transportation & Sustainability

In my last two blogs, I described how sustainability drove the choice of building materials for our Building Hope expansion and how the new facility will conserve natural resources.  But our commitment to creating a safe and healthy environment extends beyond our campus. As we planned the expansion, we created a Livable Streets initiative that supports our focus on green and sustainable design by improving how people travel to and from Seattle Children’s. Read full post »

Conservation strategies, going the extra mile


Guest Blog with Paulo Nunes-Ueno, Director of Transportation & Sustainability

Seattle Children’s is committed to designing, constructing and operating all of our facilities in the most sustainable way we can. As we planned our Building Hope expansion, we went the extra mile to go green.

In my last blog, I shared with you how sustainability drove our choice of building materials. Here are some details about how we’ll conserve natural resources and improve the natural habitat. Read full post »

Healthy Choices Drive Design and Construction

Guest Blog with Paulo Nunes-Ueno, Director of  Transportation & Sustainability

Our first priority when we started planning our Building Hope expansion was to create a safe, healing and welcoming environment for patients and families. But we didn’t stop there. We also committed to making the healthiest choices possible in every phase of design and construction – healthy for the building’s occupants, the neighborhood and the planet. Read full post »

Annual Garden Sale This Weekend

Don’t let the gray skies fool you. Spring is here – and so is the annual Seattle Children’s Garden Sale. Presented by the Laura Brigman Guild, the sale is this weekend, April 20-April 22, at our administrative offices, 6901 Sand Point Way N.E.  Hours are noon until 6 p.m. on Friday, 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. on Saturday and 10 a.m. until 2 p. m. on Sunday. Read full post »

Ground Covers, Grasses and Trees… Oh My!

Last week we shared how Seattle Children’s is incorporating green roofs into the new Building Hope expansion.  But there’s also a lot of green that will make its way back to the ground around the new expansion in the coming months.

Before the construction site was cleared, over 4,000 plants were saved so they could be replanted around the new expansion. They’ve been lovingly cared for by Children’s Grounds Maintenance team. Read full post »

Turning Gray Roofs Green

Many natural elements are being incorporated into the Building Hope expansion, not only for healing and aesthetic purposes, but also for environmental friendliness and sustainability.

A feature starting to take shape on the new expansion are the “green” roofs… which are literally roofs covered in vegetation. Read full post »

It’s Electric! Children’s Vanpooler Shares Her Experience Driving the New LEAF Car

In September we shared the exciting news that Seattle Children’s was invited to pilot the nation’s first electric vehicle vanpools. Four Nissan LEAF cars were added to the commute options for Children’s employees as part of King County’s new “Metropool.”

We thought it would be fun to follow up with some of these vanpool drivers to see how their commute in these new cars is going! Read full post »

Metro’s electric-vehicle Metropool program debuts at Seattle Children’s

The nation’s first electric-vehicle vanpools quietly fired up their engines at a dedication ceremony at Seattle Children’s on Tuesday, August 30, as four Nissan LEAF cars were added to the commute options for Children’s employees as part of King County’s new “Metropool.” The LEAF, which seats five people, is a 100% electric, no gas, no tailpipe, no emissions vehicle with an estimated driving range of 100 miles on a single charge. Read full post »

Seattle Children’s Is Noted for Its Eco-friendly Efforts

Seattle Children’s recently won the 2010 Practice Greenhealth’s Partner for Change With Distinction Award for its extensive green efforts.

“It is an honor to receive this recognition,” shared Mitch Birchfield, director of Environmental Services. “Our overarching goal is to be a great neighbor by promoting environmental practices and supporting our increasingly green culture dedicated to the health of patients, workers and our community.”

Here is a list of highlights showing many of Children’s green efforts in 2010 that led to this award:

• Children’s recycling program increased by 34%

• Children’s staff bicycled to work 439,000 miles (avoiding 71,000 vehicle trips and saving about $136,000 in personal vehicle costs)

• 34 tons of pharmaceutical waste were diverted from landfills and waterways

• 12 tons of compostable materials from the hospital’s main campus Operating Room were diverted from the solid waste stream

• 2,000 plants, trees and groundcover were salvaged from the Laurelon Terrace construction site

• At least $25,000 were realized in cost savings to propagate plants from existing plants/trees/shrubs

• 4.5 million pounds of carbon dioxide emissions were reduced by staff not driving alone to work

• 626 tons of mixed materials were recycled

Jeff Hughes, manager of Sustainability and Environmental Stewardship, believes it is all about sustainability as we look toward the future. “We’re pleased with the acknowledgement of our eco-friendly efforts,” he shared. “With the hospital’s master plan, we have to look at each phase of the growth process and find ways to incorporate green ideas into the plans. As part of this, we’ve planted more than 2,000 species and varietals of plants and trees from around the world that encircle the main campus and act as emotional therapy for patients, families and staff.”