Loyola University to shut down medical
Maywood, IL— Loyola University
Health System’s president and CEO Dr. Anthony L. Barbato
announced in August that Loyola has signed an agreement with the
Illinois Environmental Protection Agency (IEPA) to shut down the
medical waste incinerator on the hospital’s Maywood campus.
Loyola voluntarily has agreed
to permanently cease operation of the incinerator within five
Engineers at the hospital point
out that during the transition, the incinerator will continue
to maintain its strong record of compliance with Illinois’
Last fall, an extensive audit
that checked for levels of emissions including carbon monoxide,
dioxins, particulates, and metals such as lead and mercury, found
that Loyola’s emission levels are well below those allowed
under its Title V Clean Air Act Permit.
Hospital officials already have
begun exploring alternative waste-disposal options and are stepping
up waste-reduction and recycling efforts in preparation for the
incinerator’s shutdown. Loyola currently incinerates 4 million
pounds of waste per year. It also recycles more than 645 tons
of paper, cardboard and other materials each year.
The changeover will be costly.
In addition to an initial capital investment to purchase equipment
and technology for the new waste-disposal system, shutting down
the incinerator is expected to increase Loyola’s operating
costs by $500,000 annually.
“Waste energy” that
had been generated by the incinerator and used to heat the hospital’s
buildings will be lost as well.
Loyola has already invested more
than $1 million in upgrades for the incinerator to ensure that
it operates in compliance with IEPA guidelines. An emissions audit
that the IEPA recommended last November cost the hospital an additional