The conversion of the Veterans Administration Medical Facility in Northport from fuel oil to natural gas is slated to begin in the fall, and the VA and National Grid have scheduled a community meeting on the project for Tuesday.
The meeting is scheduled to begin at 7 p.m. at the Northport American Legion Hall, 7 Woodside Ave.
The project has been in the planning since 2008, said Louis Errichiello, energy manager for the VA’s Northport facility.
Errichiello said the move will help the VA facility meet environmental mandates by reducing greenhouse-gas emissions even as cheaper natural gas is expected to save $500,000 or more in energy costs per year. The VA relies on fuel oil to generate heat for the facility and power the hospital’s sterilization system.
“It gives us the opportunity now to reduce our fuel storage inventory and the number of trucks that transport fuel to our site,” Errichiello said. “So I think it’s obviously a great project. It enables us to achieve a number of these energy program goals and further our environmental stewardship.”
The project is expected to cost about $1 million, which will come from the VA’s capital projects budget, Errichiello said, and National Grid will construct a 9,000-foot gas main to the property at its own cost.
The project is expected to be finished in spring 2012.