Naval District Washington (NDW) is celebrating Energy Awareness Month in October. Designed to inform and educate personnel about energy consumption and conservation, the campaign also hopes to encourage energy conservation and responsible usage by bringing awareness to the forefront.
The campaign began in 1981 with American Energy Week. President George Bush expanded the effort in 1991 when he proclaimed October as Energy Awareness Month. The Department of the Navy has long been conducting energy awareness campaigns that promote the wise and efficient use of energy. The goal of 2013 Navy Energy Action Month efforts is to bring about cultural and behavioral change that enables energy security and resiliency. The Navy's energy initiatives are highlighted in October, but continue throughout the year.
Rear Adm. Markham Rich, Commandant, NDW, in conjunction with Capt. Antonio Edmonds, Naval Facilities Engineering Command (NAVFAC) Washington commanding officer, approved an energy framework that incorporated five energy pillars with the goal of building a robust energy program for the region. The energy team consists of key players including energy officers, regional energy program mangers (REPM), and installation energy managers (IEMs), making it from top-to-bottom an all-hands effort in the region, to include all tenant commands.
“The NDW/NAVFAC Energy Vision involves five energy pillars that operate independently, but together create NDW/NAVFAC Washington's comprehensive energy program,” said Lt. Cmdr. Keith Benson, NDW/NAVFAC Washington energy officer. He explained that the five pillars are energy culture, energy information, energy efficiency, renewable energy/alternative fuels, and energy security.
According to Benson, the energy culture is a shared vision serving as the foundation of the comprehensive energy program focused on efficient use of energy resources to ensure optimal mission readiness. To accomplish the goal of responsible use of resources aligned with energy governance, all personnel must take it upon themselves to use energy wisely.
“All employees bear the responsibility for being good energy stewards that value responsible use of resources aligned with energy governance,” said Benson. “The objectives include integrating energy planning into all installation master plans, creating energy teams throughout all supported and tenant commands, and raising awareness and commitment to energy excellence.”
Benson said that energy information systems will interconnect technologies and processes to provide actionable information based on “real-time” and accurate data. All leaders will use this information to optimize opportunities to reduce consumption, integrate renewable energy and alternative fuels and enhance security.
“Each installation will integrate Building Control Systems and Utility Control Systems, which includes Advanced Metering Infrastructure and Supervisory Control and Data Acquisition,” said Benson. “NDW data management systems will collect, monitor, analyze and provide energy performance feedback to all end users over a secure network helping drive behavioral and cultural change.”
Benson added that further information is available in the “Shore Energy Management” OPNAV 4100.5E of August, 2012.
In order to optimize usage, Benson said that streamlining procedures will create efficiencies by improving the infrastructure of buildings and utility systems, and vehicle fleets through energy efficient projects and consumption reduction measures. He added that incorporating effective technology and management practices will also achieve cost savings.
“These efficiencies must be cost-effective with high return of investments and leverage alternative financing mechanisms to implement energy efficiency measures such as energy savings performance contracts, utility energy service contracts, and power purchase agreements, in addition to traditionally funded programs such as the Energy Conservation Investment Program and CNIC N4 Restoration, Modernization - Energy,” said Benson. “We will incorporate sustainable building designs through the NDW/NAVFAC Washington energy checklist and the U.S. Green Building Council's Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design Green Building Rating System for new construction and major renovations. Alternative fuel vehicles will be incorporated into our fleet to support the SECNAV goal of reducing petroleum use in non-tactical vehicle operations by 50 percent by 2015.”
Renewable Energy/Alternative Fuels
Benson said that while the primary strategy is focused on reducing energy consumption across all NDW installations, cost effective opportunities with renewable energy and alternative fuels will be explored. According to Benson, These opportunities will produce utility cost savings and support energy security, while integrating and diversifying utility distribution systems to include increasing Smart Grid and Micro Grid capabilities.
“Similar to our traditional energy project portfolios, we will create renewable energy portfolios based on approaches that identify the best locations for renewable generation, and public and private financing options. Specifically, we will leverage power purchase and leasing agreements to implement large-scale renewable energy projects and continue to add capacity through small-scale renewable generation within an energy-secure framework. Furthermore, NDW and NAVFAC Washington will support the use of energy storage and increase alternative fuels in non-tactical vehicles as these technologies mature and become financially viable.”
Finally, in order to maintain mission readiness, the security of energy resources must be sound. Benson said that especially in cases of disaster, natural or otherwise, the risk of failure of the electric grid, natural gas and fuel supplies is significant, and NDW will prevent disruption through a number of options.
“The NDW/NAVFAC Washington energy team is committed to improving its energy security posture by reducing our reliance on external energy sources through conservation, efficiency and on-site generation, and reducing vulnerabilities of physical- and cyber-attacks through Smart Grid capabilities,” said Benson. “Technologies such as photovoltaics [solar energy], wind energy, fuel cells and combined heat and power are examples of energy systems being investigated and implemented where feasible.”
As these plans move forward, the NDW/NAVFAC Washington team continues to set the standard for energy efficiency and awareness.
For more information on events happening in NDW, visit www.facebook.com/NavDistWash.