As provided in a Centralia Coal Transition Board press release:
Centralia, (May 13, 2021) The Centralia Coal Transition Grants Weatherization Board is pleased to announce it has approved a grant award to Morton Hospital, now Arbor Health to support projects that will reduce overall energy consumption and operational costs associated with running the hospital. Upgrades to convert the interior lighting to LED will reduce the lighting energy consumption by 50% while providing a lighting solution that has a life expectancy of over 10 years; improvements to the HVAC systems provides energy conservation, reduces operational costs and will provide a comfortable atmosphere with a heating and cooling system, including adequate ventilation in patient spaces and critical care areas.
The grant amount of $101,139.00 supports efforts by Arbor Health to utilize a collaborative approach to secure additional funding with incentives and matching funding to fully fund the project.
The Weatherization Board was formed as a result of the 2011 Agreement between TransAlta and the state of Washington to transition the Centralia plant away from coal-fired operations with one unit shutting down in December 2020 and the second unit in December 2025.
Arbor Health located in Morton, Washington provides an array of medical services to eastern Lewis County including hospital services and three medical clinics. Since 2006 this 25-bed Critical Access Hospital has provided services such as surgery, emergency, diagnostic imaging, laboratory, dietary, general services and maintains administrative offices.
Overview of the Centralia Coal Transition Funding Boards
Annual payments for the funding boards began in 2012 with the last payment due Dec. 31, 2023. The opportunity to start flowing dollars into projects became effective December 31, 2015. Weatherization Board ($10M): established to fund energy efficiency and weatherization for the residents, employees, business, non-profit organizations and local governments within Lewis County and South Thurston County; up to $1 million shall be allocated to fund residential energy efficiency and weatherization measures for low-income and moderate-income residents of Lewis County and South Thurston County.
Economic & Community Development Board ($20M): established to fund education, retraining, economic development, and community enhancement; at least $5M shall be allocated to fund education, retraining and economic development specifically targeting the needs of workers displaced from the Centralia facility.
Energy Technology Board ($25M): established to fund energy technologies with the potential to create environmental benefits to the state of Washington.