Beaufort Hospital – heat from sawmill residue

Beaufort Hospital – heat from sawmill residue

Beaufort Hospital, like most small rural hospitals, was facing the challenge of rising costs and shrinking budgets.

The hospital was using LPG for heating and hot water, which was costing around $60,000 a year.

The Central Highlands Agribusiness Forum and the Pyrenees Shire Council identified the hospital as an ideal demonstration site for bioenergy.

A heating study of the hospital was commissioned and the boiler specification was developed.

Tenders were sought to provide a biomass boiler system to heat the hospital based on these specifications. In July 2013 a New Zealand company, Living Energy, was appointed to install the boiler.

The 110 kW Hargassner boiler, which was manufactured in Austria, is housed in a modified shipping container which is both boiler house and fuel store.

The containerised system allowed the installation to proceed quickly with minimal impact on hospital operations. It is also relocatable should the need arise.

Fuel for the boiler is supplied from the Pyrenees Timber sawmill at nearby Chute.

The system has been operational since February 2014.

Viewing windows allow the public to see the system in operation.

The following documents are free to download from the Pyrenees Shire Council:

  • Project summary
  • Hospital Boiler business case
  • Regional Bioenergy Project – Lessons learnt
  • Hospital Boiler final report

A Sydney Morning Herald news article (‘Forest biomass a waste of energy’) on the hospital boilers (dated February 2017) is also available.

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View photos of the facility.

More information:
Daryl Sherger
Bioenergy Project Manager
Phone: 03 5349 1100
Email: daryl.scherger@pyrenees.vic.gov.au