West Point on track to achieve Net Zero goals with Huntsville Center help

U.S. Army Engineering and Support Center, Huntsville
Published Dec. 15, 2014
Solar panels on top of the Lichtenberg Tennis Center have become a visible sign of progress toward achieving West Point’s Net Zero Energy goals.

Solar panels on top of the Lichtenberg Tennis Center have become a visible sign of progress toward achieving West Point’s Net Zero Energy goals.

The U.S. Army Engineering and Support Center, Huntsville Energy Division met with Director of Public Works (DPW) Matt Talaber at the U.S. Military Academy at West Point, New York, in October to chart a way ahead for helping the institution achieve Net Zero.

The meeting was held in response to a West Point request in July for assistance in charting a course to execute projects that will enable the DPW to reduce energy demand and consumption, and address increased energy security risks.  Huntsville Center will provide a Capital Investment Strategy and road map that clearly identifies the yearly projects and steps needed to help West Point approach Net Zero.

Huntsville Center dispatched an engineering team to West Point the week of Oct. 27 to gather and assess past, current and future energy, infrastructure and modernization projects. The team is reviewing current energy operations, management control systems and opportunities for renewable energy projects. The team is also analyzing their on-site findings, as well as the myriad of energy studies that have been conducted at the historic 16,068-acre campus.

“Huntsville Center will access where West Point is right now – what’s been done, what’s underway, and what’s planned – as the first step in building a comprehensive, integrated strategy and viable road map to Net Zero,” said Paul Robinson, chief of the Huntsville Center Energy Division. 

West Point DPW has taken many steps to reduce energy consumption and improve efficiency of its nearly 8 million square feet of buildings. DPW recently completed an extensive rebuild of the campus energy management control system, which resulted in the addition of state-of-the-art controls to West Point’s heat and cooling systems, steam line repair and installation of better lighting. Building upon West Point’s prior success and plans will enable the dedicated team to accelerate results, Robinson said.

"I remain confident that by leveraging the resources and knowledge of the Directorate of Public Works, the Corps of Engineers, West Point's academic departments, and Cadets, as well as our industry partners, we can realize our goal of net zero energy," Talaber said.

Huntsville Center’s Energy Division is the organization tasked to lead this initiative.  The division has assembled a project delivery team (PDT) comprised of Huntsville Engineering and Support Center, U.S. Army Construction Engineering Research Lab and North Atlantic Division/New York District to strategically partner with West Point to holistically evaluate USMA’s energy operations and provide coordinated solutions to achieve Net Zero. 

From investigation and planning phase though acquisition, execution and sustainment, the division has a full suite of energy programs in its toolbox to help installations identify conservation measures, reduce consumption, improve energy efficiency, enhance energy security, and ensure equitable utility rates from reliable utility sources. The Commercial Utility Program team (CUP) is one of the programs the division is using to conduct a utility service assessment of West Point’s commercial utility providers. CUP’s scope of work will involve summarizing West Point’s contractual obligations going forward, conducting an assessment of the utility provider transmission study and a utility rate analysis. 

Moving forward, the PDT will continue meeting monthly with the West Point DPW staff to evaluate recommendations and define projects for implementation to ensure USMA remains on track to meet the Army’s Net Zero goal. West Point is one of the Army's nine Net Zero pilot installations.