ARMY RESERVE REDUCES ENERGY USE INTENSITY IN FISCAL YEAR 2016

Story by Jonelle Kimbrough, Strategic Communicator
Army Reserve Installation Management Directorate

Energy touches nearly every aspect of the United States Army Reserve’s mission, from the electricity that powers our Army Reserve Centers to the fuel that powers our vehicles. To maintain readiness and adapt to a constantly evolving global presence, the Army Reserve is striving to conserve energy and other vital assets.

In fiscal year 2016, the Army Reserve proved its commitment to that goal.

According to the United States Army Reserve Fiscal Year 2016 Annual Energy Management Report, the Army Reserve achieved a 17.9 percent reduction in energy use intensity last year, compared to the fiscal year 2015 baseline. The reduction far exceeded a Federal goal of a 2.5 percent annual reduction in energy use intensity.

“The Army Reserve is a leader in the Department of Defense’s charge to save natural, fiscal and operational resources and to accomplish goals toward energy security,” said Paul Wirt, Chief of the Army Reserve Sustainability Programs Branch.

Nine of the ten Army Reserve-funded Installations, Regional Support Commands and Mission Support Command reported a reduction in energy use intensity, and seven of those ten sites reported reductions of at least 12 percent.

Furthermore, the enterprise’s reduction in energy use intensity translated into a significant cost avoidance of $6.7 million in fiscal year 2016 – a cost equivalent to staging nine Army Reserve training exercises.

“If we can conserve energy in our facilities, we can ensure that our resources are directed to our most critical missions,” Wirt explained. “If we are reducing the energy consumption and cost for services such as lighting and heating, we can focus our efforts and attention on energy security and resilience for our facilities.”

Diverse initiatives throughout the enterprise contributed to the Army Reserve’s efforts to save energy, increase energy efficiency and reduce America’s dependence on foreign fossil fuels. For instance, the 99th Regional Support Command leveraged a portion of its Energy Savings Performance Contract to replace fluorescent lights with light emitting diodes at Technical Sergeant Vernon McGarity Army Reserve Center in Pennsylvania, where the improvements reduced energy consumption by 51 percent and conserved an estimated 184,000 kilowatt hours of energy. The Army Reserve implemented solar projects at the 9th Mission Support Command, the 88th Regional Support Command and Fort McCoy, contributing to the generation of 46.3 million British Thermal Units of renewable energy in fiscal year 2016. Fort Hunter Liggett used heat pump technologies and other holistic energy recovery opportunities to increase the energy efficiency of four Transient Training Enlisted barracks and push the Installation toward Net Zero, when it will produce as much energy as it consumes. In addition, the Army Reserve continued its endeavors to create an energy conscious culture among the Soldiers, Civilians and Families who are uniquely positioned to serve as stewards in the ranks of the Army as well as the ranks of their communities.

Wirt believes that the successes will continue to charge the Army Reserve’s Energy Program. “Last year’s achievements are remarkable,” he said. “They are inspiring our Installations, Regional Support Commands and Mission Support Command to be even more ambitious and to expect even more robust results over the coming year. The Army Reserve is taking action to protect our energy resources because an energy secure Army Reserve is a resilient Army Reserve that is increasingly capable of accomplishing our mission today and into the future.”

light-switch

LET THERE BE LIGHT: ARMY RESERVE HONORED FOR ENERGY EFFICIENCY PROJECTS

LED Tube Lights

The U.S. Army Reserve’s 9th Mission Support Command (MSC) and 99th Regional Support Command (RSC) have garnered accolades from the United States Department of Energy (DOE) 2016 Interior Lighting Campaign (ILC) Awards.

Launched in May 2015 at the DOE Better Buildings Summit, the ILC is a recognition and guidance program designed to help facility owners and managers identify and implement savings opportunities from high efficiency interior lighting solutions. Currently, the Army Reserve is among 49 participants in the program that includes the 9th MSC, 63rd RSC, 81st RSC, 88th RSC and 99th RSC.

This year, thirteen agencies were recognized for outstanding performances in their applications of lighting systems. For their energy conservation and efficiency initiatives, both the 9th MSC and 99th RSC received awards for Exemplary Federal Government Sector Sites.

The 9th MSC’s award was for a lighting replacement project at the Army Reserve Center (ARC) in Guam. They replaced two-lamp (56 watt) and four-lamp (124 watt) fluorescent lights with 36 watt light emitting diodes (LEDs). The project reduced energy use by 62 percent and resulted in an estimated annual energy savings of 125,000 kilowatt hours (kWh), which could power 11 average homes in the United States.

As part of its Energy Savings Performance Contract (ESPC), the 99th RSC replaced
three-lamp (86 watt) and four-lamp (108 watt) fluorescent lights with 46 watt and 61 watt LEDs at Technical Sergeant Vernon McGarity ARC in Coraopolis, Pennsylvania. “While many sites in the 99th’s area of responsibility received LED upgrades under the ESPC, the McGarity ARC was one of the largest sites to receive an upgrade and thus was a good candidate to nominate for the award,” explained Mr. Justin Drigon, Energy Management Coordinator for the 99th RSC. The project saved 184,000 kWh for a total energy reduction of 51 percent.

The efforts of all of the ILC’s participants – which also include Target, The Cleveland Clinic and T-Mobile – have saved 130 million kWh and an impressive $13.5 million in the program’s first year, and the Army Reserve is proud to contribute.

“[The project] has reduced our energy consumption and ecological footprint as a whole,” said Ms. Christina Vicari, Energy Coordinator for the 9th MSC. Vicari said that the receipt of the award is very gratifying and demonstrates “that our efforts are making enough of an impact to be worthy of mention.”

“The accumulation of these efforts starts to take effect eventually,” Vicari continued. “Sometimes, you do not see the benefit or the result of all your efforts with all the time and effort that goes into these projects. The award is confirmation that the team here is making a noticeable difference in the 9th MSC’s overall energy strategy plan.”

Drigon agreed. “The award means a lot for the team here,” he said. “It is great to see that hard work and attention to detail pay off. [The award is] also something that the units at the McGarity ARC can take pride in as well. It is THEIR facility, and I’m sure it is a great point of pride to know that it has been recognized.”

Drigon went on to acknowledge the even broader impacts of the recognition. “I think the award will go a long way in helping the 99th RSC community, the Army Reserve community and even the active Army component understand the strides the Army Reserve is making in energy conservation,” he said.

For details about the Interior Lighting Campaign, visit interiorlightingcampaign.org.