Leading the effort to save taxpayers’ money and contribute to energy and water efficiency, the U.S. Army Engineering and Support Center, Huntsville, was recently recognized alongside other members of the Army team with several 2016 Federal Energy and Water Management Awards.
Dr. Timothy Unruh, director of the Department of Energy’s Federal Energy Management Program, presented the awards during a ceremony held in Washington, D.C., Dec. 9.
Co-sponsored by FEMP and the Interagency Energy Management Task Force, the awards recognize individuals and organizations in each of five categories, including career exceptional service, contracting, programs, projects and the prestigious director's award.
Of the 30 energy and water management awards presented, the Army received the highest percentage for all federal agencies. In total, it received seven, shared an eighth and significantly contributed to a ninth award.
In addition, the service garnered the prestigious Director's award for achieving more than $1 billion in performance contracts toward the President's Performance Contracting Challenge, which challenged federal agencies to award $4 billion in performance contracts by the end of 2016.
The savings represent 1.1 trillion Btu of energy, 359 million gallons of water, and almost $40 million during fiscal year 2015. The energy savings alone are equivalent to removing 48,000 cars from the road or eliminating the average energy use of more than 24,000 households annually.
This success is a result of the exceptional dedication, hard work and customer service of the contracting folks, engineers, project and program managers, office of counsel, and all the other staff, customers and stakeholders that made up the Project Delivery Teams, said Michael Norton, chief, Energy Planning Branch, Energy Division, U.S. Army Engineering and Support Center, Huntsville.
“The program grew from a few awards a year with capital investments of $20-25 million to 16-20 awards of more than $240 million in FY14, and in the $141 million range the last couple years,” he said.
“The expedited acquisition process they developed and implemented was a team effort allowing the PDT to support not only Army garrisons, but also Navy and, most recently, Air Force bases to meet the PPCC and other energy goals and mandates.
”Project awards were presented to the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, Mobile District, Tennessee-Tombigbee Waterway in Mobile, Alabama, and the Department of the Army, U.S. Army Corps of Engineers and Fort Riley, Kansas.In FY15, the Mobile District completed construction projects using the first energy savings performance contract within USACE Civil Works, with an investment value of more than $3 million.
The project was a "proof of concept" initiative, intended to demonstrate the viability of using an ESPC to implement energy conservation measures at a series of small, geographically dispersed facilities, including high-mast lighting at the 10 locks and dams along the 234-mile navigation channel which comprise the Tennessee-Tombigbee Waterway.
Systemwide, the ESPC is guaranteed to deliver a 21.7 percent in energy savings, or about 5.1 billion Btu and $160,000 per year. This project provides the impetus for growing the USACE ESPC pipeline, currently comprised of $16 million in contracts awarded to date, including $5.5 million in investment for three similar river-based navigation systems. The pipeline now includes virtually all USACE locks and dams in the Mississippi Valley from St. Paul, Minnesota, to New Orleans.
Fort Riley, the Army and the Army Corps of Engineers shared an award with the EPA to help advance the installation’s net zero, waste and energy goals through innovative technology.
There, the agencies partnered with the Kansas United School District 475 to install a green infrastructure permeable pavement parking lot on the post’s Seitz Elementary School.Completed in Aug. 2015, the parking lot is comprised of permeable interlocking concrete pavers which reduce storm water runoff along with its associated pollutants. Each year, it’s expected to capture 443,000 gallons of storm water that would normally be lost to runoff.
In addition, this project will serve as a platform to educate students on storm water management
.In an Army news release following the awards presentation, the Hon. Katherine Hammack, Assistant Secretary of the Army for Installations, Energy and Environment, commented on how the awardees were “helping lead the way in advancing energy efficiency, deploying renewable energy, supporting water reclamation and reuse, investing in integrated planning and design efforts, and leading educational campaigns on sustainability."
"The Army has a history of leading by example in determined support of our national warfighter,” she said. “As administrations and priorities change, we believe our energy and sustainability efforts strongly 'Soldier on' to support increasing Army mission capabilities today and preserving our operating ability in the future.
”She added that the goal is to establish specific energy and water security requirements so that redundant and diverse supplies of energy and water, from renewable sources, is the logical and cost effective norm to support the military mission.