DPW, KMC set sustainability standard for Army in 2008

SCHOFIELD BARRACKS, Hawaii - The Directorate of Public Works (DPW), Schofield Barracks, and Kilauea Military Camp (KMC), U.S. Army Garrison-Hawaii (USAG-HI), were runners-up for the 2008 Secretary of the Army Sustainability Team Award, recently.

The staff and leadership of these organizations, faced with diminishing resources and growing budget restrictions, demonstrated a concerted shift toward sustainable planning and development that benefits our entire military family.

At Schofield Barracks
Schofield Barracks' DPW, Utilities Division, working in partnership with Aqua Engineers, Inc., is recognized for the in-plant development of an R-1 Reuse Plant at the Schofield Barracks Wastewater Distribution Plant.

The R-1 Reuse Plant, which began operating six months ahead of schedule in September 2008, recycles approximately 100,000 gallons of wastewater per day. Recognized as R-1, the recycled water is being used for in-plant operations and various landscape watering systems instead of potable water.

If 100 percent of the recycled water is used, R-1 projects could reduce the Army's demand for potable water by more one million gallons per day, and potentially eliminate wastewater discharge.

The wastewater treatment plant at Schofield Barracks became one of the first plants under the U.S. Department of Defense Privatization Program and is the largest privately owned R-1 facility in Hawaii.

The R-1 upgrade was an economically efficient way to improve the quality of wastewater treatment while simultaneously creating a sustainable benefit to our island home.

Kilauea Military Camp sits at the summit of Kilauea Volcano. At 4,000 feet in elevation, 20 miles from the nearest county resources, and overlooking some of Hawaii's most unforgiving, yet environmentally sensitive lands, the KMC staff understands sustainability.

Providing daily support to more than 100 cottages, a 110-bed dormitory, food and beverage operations, two laundries and a fire station, KMC depends on renewable natural resources. The 2008 Sustainability Team Award recognized KMC for its success across multiple initiatives:

Aca,!AcWater catchment. With a consumption of more than nine million gallons of water annually and a $738 thousand price tag for hauling water, KMC has transformed more than six acres of rooftops, and otherwise unused overhead space, into a water catchment system that pipes clean, purified water throughout KMC.

The innovative, gravity-fed system saves an average of $162 thousand annually and greatly reduces the need to draw valuable drinking water from local communities.

Aca,!AcPhotovoltaic projects. KMC furthers its efforts in the three-E's (energy, environment and the economy) with plans to develop rooftop catchment using thin-film photovoltaic panels in 2009.

Initial installation will save more than $35 thousand in annual energy costs. Future panels in 2010 will see a more robust initiative in photovoltaic projects while providing six acres of rain-shed catchment.

Aca,!AcIndigenous plant restoration. Working with the National Park Services, KMC constructed a greenhouse committed to indigenous plant restoration. This direction not only addresses the annual need to replenish the park's landscaping, but also puts the Army in good stead with the local population.

Aca,!AcHydrogen fuel. Working in cooperation with the State of Hawaii, the U.S. Department of Energy (DoE), the National Park Service and local industry, KMC is looking forward to the construction of facilities to produce hydrogen fuel as a renewable energy source.

Through a DoE grant, KMC will acquire five hydrogen-powered passenger vehicles. The use of these vehicles will reduce fossil fuel consumption on the island of Hawaii by 10,000 gallons per year and eliminate the toxic carbon emissions of current vehicles.

This effort demonstrates an awareness and direct action by USAG-HI to protect the Big Island's sensitive ecosystem.