Upon opening our doors in 2004, we have been actively engaged in working to reduce our environmental footprint, both locally and globally. As a result, AMVS is the first PACE-certified and LEED-certified veterinary hospital in the state of Colorado.
Dedication to providing the highest quality of care to patients and clients is the top priority of every veterinary practice. Living up to this commitment requires specific resources, such as disposable medical supplies, powerful medical equipment, and industrial strength kennel and facility cleaning products.
Access to these resources can make for a fully operational and successful clinic, but it can also make for a highly wasteful and polluting facility. In the medical world, taking care of patients while being environmentally friendly can be difficult. But here at Aspen Meadow Veterinary Specialists, we made the commitment to provide the highest level of care while being “green.”
We received consultation from Partners for a Clean Environment (PACE), a voluntary, non-regulatory program that offers free pollution prevention education and technical assistance to Boulder County businesses, to help with the initial build out of our facility at 104 S Main St in Longmont, CO. We continue to maintain a partnership with PACE to help educate new staff members in continuing to operate in a green clinic.
Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design
AMVS is LEED (Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design) Certified. In 2009, AMVS became the first veterinary clinic in the country to achieve LEED certification.
Following our certification, Dr. Matt Rooney began speaking at veterinary conferences across the country in hopes of educating others about the possibilities available to support the environment. He hoped to show other veterinary organizations what AMVS accomplished and to let them know that it is possible to provide the best care for both their patients and the environment.
Key Steps and Practices for Greening our Facility:
- AMVS is the first LEED-certified clinic in the country.
- Building plans include green architecture and construction.
- The building is 8,400 square feet.
- The building has five exam rooms, a radiology suite, intensive care unit, procedure room, isolation ward, and two operating rooms that provide the same equipment and abilities as the local human hospital.
- What’s green about this building?
- Designated parking for low emissions and hybrid vehicles
- White roof elements and a reflective white membrane to deflect heat
- Recycling areas throughout
- Composting on site
- All recycled concrete
- Re-use of doors, frames, storefront, drinking fountains, windows, walls, and roof.
- Sustainable “teaching” signs.
- Recycled content carpet, ceramic flooring, laminates, and solid surface counter tops
- FSC (Forest Stewardship Council) wood doors
- Low emitting materials (low VOC), such as paint, carpet, sealants, and adhesives, used exclusively
- Energy efficiency lighting and day lighting
- Fluorescent light fixtures equipped with high performance T-8 lighting system
- Fixtures will turn off if ample amount of daylight is in the interior spaces
- Timers, dimmers, double switched lighting, and motion sensors
- Green power
- 100 percent of total energy use created by 100 percent wind power through Community Wind Energy
- Light pollution reduction
- All outdoor light fixtures designed to prevent light going up into the sky or off of the property
- Does not intrude into nocturnal life habitats
- Designed with the capacity to generate some of its own electricity in the future
- Energy efficiency lighting and day lighting
- Refrigerant Management – new equipment utilizes environmentally-friendly refrigerants and techniques
- Outdoor air delivery monitoring with carbon dioxide sensors
- Highly efficient HVAC (heating, ventilation, and air conditioning) with an energy recuperation system that draws out the energy in the old air, hot or cold, and uses it to heat or cool the new air coming in
- 30 percent increase in ventilation above ASHRA requirements with carbon dioxide censors
- Thermal comfort design
- Low-flow fixtures and dual flush toilets
- Other green design features
- Site is within ½ block of at least two public transportation bus lines, a key site selection criteria
- Bike racks, showers, and lockers to allow employees to bike to work or work out while on break
- For several years, AMVS (formerly part of Flatiron Veterinary Specialists) has partnered with Eco-Cycle of Boulder County and Eco-Products to work towards being a zero-waste business. Even before moving to its planned LEED certified building, AMVS had already started doing everything it could to reduce its environmental impact, including using recycled and biodegradable products (i.e. compostable plates, silverware, paper towels, and cups), recycling, composting and reusing our waste (i.e. even hard to recycle materials, such as plastic syringe cases), and conserving energy and increasing energy efficiency
- AMVS is a PACE certified organization, which is a voluntary program that recognizes leaders in the business community who are setting the standard for environmental sustainability. Certification criteria are based upon the following categories: Culture of Sustainability, Energy Efficiency, Water Conservation, Resource Management, and Transportation.
To learn more about how you can make your clinic greener or to find out more about Aspen Meadow Veterinary Specialists, please email or call 303-678-8844 and ask for owner, Dr. Matt Rooney.
Links to any media featuring our greenness:
Powerpoint presentations by Matt Rooney: