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Enel X’s VPP sustainably powers Taiwan’s Far Eastern Memorial Hospital

The solution helps the healthcare facility generate revenue and support the country’s grid and energy transition

Far Eastern Memorial Hospitable (FEMH), one of Taiwan’s leading healthcare providers, is undertaking an important energy transformation. In August 2022, the hospital joined Enel X’s Virtual Power Plant (VPP), enabling it to source power more sustainably and cost-effectively and to participate in the country’s Demand Response Ancillary Services Market. Participation in the Market helps to ensure a more secure energy supply, while supporting Taiwan’s energy transition and efforts to implement a circular economy. The VPP solution also enhances grid stability and resiliency by providing for a conduit between the hospital and the Taiwan Power Company (TPC), which – through Enel X’s VPP solution – can request the hospital disconnect its air conditioning circuit from the grid, so as to reduce demand load. While the hospital’s AC is “offline”, backup generators seamlessly take over generating no impact on hospital operations.

The client

Offering over 1.3 million outpatient visits each year and ranking fourth nationally in terms of emergency services, Far Eastern Memorial Hospital (FEMH) is a medical center-level teaching facility, the first and only medical center in New Taipei City, in northern Taiwan. The founding philosophy of FEMH is “by the society, for the society”. For this reason, apart from developing core medical expertise and innovating in research and development, the hospital sees paying close attention to issues related to sustainable operations as part of its mission. Efficient use of energy is a key driver of the facility’s ambitions: hospitals rank second nationally in terms of energy use among non-industrial sectors. Over the years, FEMH has won multiple prestigious awards, including the Taiwan Corporate Sustainability and the Taiwan Sustainable Action awards.

Key figures of the deal

Enel X's challenge

Hospitals are key facilities for any community and they have very specific needs when it comes to energy consumption. First of all, they require a steady, reliable power supply. They also need – as much as possible – to be protected from fluctuations in energy prices, as energy expenses are a large contributor to their operating costs. In addition, Far Eastern Memorial Hospital has embarked on a sustainability journey whose goals are to sustain the energy transition in Taiwan while supporting the uptake of renewable energies. The hospital needed a reliable energy partner who could meet all its requirements.
Far Eastern Memorial Hospital (FEMH) joined a Virtual Power Plant (VPP) created by Enel X in Taiwan that enables the facility to both save on power expenses and contribute to grid resiliency. When the local power grid is in need, Enel X’s Network Operations Center receives a dispatch notification from Taiwan Power Company (TPC) and immediately notifies FEMH through various communications channels. Upon receiving the dispatch directives, the hospital reduces energy load on the power grid by switching its air conditioning (AC) circuit to the generators with an automatic transfer switch. The AC is then supported by the generators. The entire process is completed in 30 minutes and maintained for up to two hours, after which the power supply can be restored from the grid. Throughout the entire process, hospital operations proceed as normal, with power transfers taking place seamlessly.
Far Eastern Memorial Hospital (FEMH) wanted an energy solution that could guarantee a constant and regular energy supply while also enabling it to pursue its sustainability and energy transition agenda. By adopting Enel X’s Virtual Power Plant (VPP) solution, the hospital will achieve these goals and other benefits. For starters, signing up to the VPP means supporting Taiwan’s energy transition and for the country to avoid the costly construction of new power plants. Always from a financial viewpoint, the VPP solution will enable the hospital to generate revenue for every hour that it is on standby in the Ancillary Services Market. From a safety standpoint, the VPP solution enhances the hospital’s operational security by guaranteeing a constant and regular flow of power, even when the national grid may be strained. It will also allow the facility to safely carry out tests and maintenance on its backup power equipment. For an institution that prides itself on excellence of service, another benefit is that the highly advanced energy solution will attract and help cultivate the best talents in the electricity sector.
Enel X’s challenge