SANANTONIO -- It s a first for Texas. A San Antonio hospital has been awarded the highest certification as a green building.

San Antonio s newest hospital is also officially its greenest. Mission Trail Baptist Hospital at Brooks City-Base on the southeast side is in the business of treating sick people, delivering babies and saving lives. According to the United States Green Building Council, they re also in the business of saving the environment.

On Wednesday, December 14, 2011, Mission Trail was awarded the highest LEED certification gold for Leadership in Environmental and Energy Design.

There s numerous savings, especially in our water consumption, in our water usage for landscaping, explained Andy Harris, president of Mission Trail Baptist Hospital. It even goes into transportation, our lighting system, our air conditioning system, and the greatest thing about it is for the people of Texas, a lot of the materials that actually built this hospital came within 500 miles of this location.

The parking lot features six electric car plug-ins to help energy savvy drivers.

The irrigation is gray water used to keep the native xeriscaping vegetation alive. Added to low flow fixtures inside, the hospital will save more than a million gallons of water annually.

Solar panels and renewable energy credits will save hundreds of thousands of dollars in electricity each year.

The hospital opened in June 2011 with a commitment not just to healthier people, but a healthier environment.

Mission Trail Baptist Hospital and Vanguard, it really just shows their commitment to sustainability and it is not an easy thing to achieve, commented Eric Sheffer, LEED project manager from Sustainable Solutions Group.

Mission Trail is one of only eight hospitals in the country and 28 in the world to attain LEED gold certification.
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