By Dennis K. Bohannon, ASA (IE&E)December 9, 2016
PENTAGON - The U.S. Army received seven Federal Energy and Water Management awards from the U.S. Department of Energy's Federal Energy Management Program, shared an eighth award, and significantly contributed to a ninth award.
The awards were presented in five categories by Dr. Timothy Unruh, director of FEMP during a ceremony in Washington D.C. The five categories are Career Exceptional Service, Contracting, Programs, Projects, and the prestigious Director's Award.
The Federal Energy Management Program (FEMP), in conjunction with the Interagency Energy Management Task Force, sponsor the annual Federal Energy and Water Management Awards, which recognizes individuals and organizations for significant contributions to energy and water efficiency within the federal government.
Of the 30 Energy and Water Management Awards the Army received the highest percentage for all federal agencies.
The Assistant Secretary of the Army for Installations, Energy and Environment (ASA (IE&E)), the Hon. Katherine Hammack participated in the award ceremony. She thanked Dr. Unruh for his continued leadership in Federal energy and water management, saying his collaboration and leadership have provided key support to many of the hallmark efforts of the Army's energy and sustainability program.
Hammack commented that the list of awardees is impressive and congratulated them. "Across the Federal government, you are 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."
She also pointed out, "The Army has a history of leading by example in determined support of our national warfighter. 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. Our team is working to establish specific energy and water security requirements for our Army installations so that consideration of redundant and diverse supplies of energy and water, from renewable sources, is the logical and cost effective norm to support our military mission."
Hammack told the awardees that they were dedicated professionals. "I am honored to share in the celebration of your success," she said.
THE DIRECTOR'S AWARD
The coveted Director's Award, the highest award possible, was kept a secret until it was presented to the Army team consisting of six surprised individuals. The team was instrumental in enabling the Army to surpass $1 billion in Energy Saving Performance and Utility Energy Saving Contracts in response to a Presidential challenge to all federal agencies. The individuals recognized were: Randy Shed, ASA (IE&E); Randy Smidt, Office of the Assistant Chief of Staff for Installation Management; David Williams, Headquarters U.S. Army Corps of Engineers; Margaret Simmons, Army Corps of Engineers, Huntsville; Michael Norton, Army Corps of Engineers, Huntsville; and Pamela Griffith, Defense Logistics Agency -- Energy.
CAREER EXCEPTIONAL SERVICE AWARDS
Two Army Civilians received the Career Exceptional Service Award, Brett Jackson and Keith Yamanaka.
Mr. Jackson is the sustainability, energy, and engineering branch chief with the Construction Facility Management Office of the Colorado Department of Military and Veterans Affairs. His 19 years of service include active duty at the Army Corps of Engineers, as well as contributions in a civilian capacity supporting the Colorado Army National Guard and Colorado Department of Military and Veterans Affairs. Mr. Jackson created innovative approaches and instituted effective strategies that enhanced the National Guard's capacity to meet its mission while maximizing energy efficiency and sustainability and increasing renewable energy use. He has enabled the implementation of exemplary energy projects by fostering a work environment of teamwork, collaboration, and group accomplishment. He facilitates activities such as education, training, and other outreach programs designed to promote new workplace behaviors, including establishing the first sustainability and energy management program for the Colorado DMVA. As an active community member, Mr. Jackson volunteered to support the City of Golden's Sustainability Initiative and the City of Aurora's Sustainability Program by applying the University of Colorado's Business Performance Excellence Model to both of these organizations to assist in aligning their sustainability efforts and goals.
Mr. Yamanaka was recognized for his 24-year career at the Army Installation Management Command, where he improved the efficiency and resiliency of critical energy, water, and mechanical systems for 22 Army installations throughout Hawaii. He instituted retro-commissioning, solar hot water, central chilled water plants, and building energy monitors across a large, diverse, and historical area. His ability to motivate field personnel through educational and technical support has ensured that efficiencies are maintainable. Mr. Yamanaka continuously coordinates efforts of tenants, solar providers, and the local utility to interconnect high penetration solar photovoltaics and mitigate grid instability through demand response measures. He has consistently perpetuated programs to facilitate federal energy initiatives. For example, over several years he championed for a 50 megawatt utility-owned generation plant at Schofield Barracks to increase service reliability for critical Army installations and the island of Oahu. Through his tireless efforts and knowledge of regulatory processes, he successfully obtained local approvals, kept the local utility engaged, and finally obtained upper Army support to execute the project-the Army's largest energy security project to date.
A Contracting Award was presented to Christine Ploschke of the U.S. Army's 99th Regional Support Command on Joint Base McGuire-Dix-Lakehurst in New Jersey.
Serving as both the environmental compliance chief and the energy manager for the 99th U.S. Army Reserve Support Command, she was recognized for her commitment to guiding the energy program and team in securing significant energy and water security-related contracts. Under her leadership, the team has used innovative contracting approaches to implement energy efficiency and renewable energy projects that will allow the Command to exceed federal energy goals and save millions of dollars. Recent accomplishments include securing $5 million through the Federal Prison Industries and UNICOR for light-emitting diode (LED) and solar powered lights and a $2.3 million project for solar mechanical equipment upgrades and building automation, which covers energy conservation measures at six facilities and is projected to save nearly $200,000 per year. One of her biggest accomplishments was implementing an energy savings performance contract designed to achieve $57 million in savings over a 21-year period, which will result in three net zero electric sites.
Program Awards were presented to teams from Fort Bragg, North Carolina and the New Jersey Army National Guard at Lawrenceville, New Jersey.
The Fort Bragg team consists of Aaron Brown, Brett Funck, Melinda Hakeman, Audrey Oxendine, and Monica Stephenson. Fort Bragg makes up 5 percent of the Army's energy consumption associated with facilities management, and in fiscal 2015 it reduced its energy use intensity by 27.2 percent compared to the 2003 baseline. The energy program employs a multi-pronged approach focused on reducing energy consumption through awareness and education of building occupants; improving system efficiency through operation, maintenance, and retrofits; and integrating energy security considerations throughout the facility planning and design process. The Fort Bragg Directorate of Public Works is proactively involved in the project development stage of all projects that directly support the mission, save energy, leverage resources, and reduce Fort Bragg's and the Army's long-term operating costs. Fort Bragg's program includes: implementing life-cycle cost effective projects; utilizing an energy savings performance contract to operate and maintain the distributed heating and cooling infrastructure; implementing an extensive utilities monitoring control system; monthly working meetings with the interior branch leads and mechanical champions to identify energy conservation measures that can be implemented daily or developed into an energy project; and a robust energy awareness program.
The New Jersey Army National Guard's team, Chief Warrant Officer Thomas Comyack, Vernon Hicks, Col. Michael Lyons, Christopher Moore, and Samantha Valentine are credited with developing the New Jersey Army National Guard's (NJARNG) comprehensive energy and water conservation program, the Clean Cut Campaign, in collaboration with Rowan University, leading to a 64 percent decrease in energy use intensity from the 2003 baseline. The Clean Cut Campaign ties together all of NJARNG's existing energy and water conservation efforts under one main goal: to reduce the NJARNG's impact on the environment by promoting a sustainable culture throughout the organization. Before the creation of the campaign, the NJARNG was implementing various conservation measures throughout its facilities, but lacked a detailed plan to direct the overall effort and align them to ensure compliance with federal regulations. The campaign brought these efforts together to increase efficiency, maximize resources, and lay out a clear path to a sustainable future. Campaign components include a 15-year comprehensive energy and water master plan, a high efficiency lighting initiative, a statewide solar photovoltaic development plan, and an education and awareness campaign.
Project Awards were presented to U.S. Army Corps of Engineers Mobile District, Tennessee-Tombigbee Waterway Mobile, Alabama; the Department of the Army, U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, and Fort Riley, Kansas.
In fiscal year 2015, the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (USACE) Mobile District, Tennessee-Tombigbee Waterway (TTWW) completed construction on projects using the first-ever energy savings performance contract (ESPC) within USACE Civil Works, with an investment value of more than $3 million. The TTWW ESPC 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 that collectively comprise the TTWW. System-wide, 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 has provided the impetus for a growing 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, Louisiana -- an impressive success due to the pioneering work done on Mobile District's TTWW.
The Department of the Army, U.S Army Corps of Engineers, and Fort Riley, Kansas shared an award with the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency. In partnership with the Army, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency signed a Memorandum of Understanding with the U.S. Army in 2011 to help advance the Army's net zero water, waste, and energy goals on Army installations through innovative technology demonstrations. As part of this effort, the EPA, Army, Army Corps of Engineers, and Kansas United School District 475 partnered to demonstrate and monitor a green infrastructure (GI) permeable pavement parking lot on Seitz Elementary School on Fort Riley, Kansas. The GI parking lot, comprised of permeable interlocking concrete pavers, reduces storm water runoff and its associated pollutants. The lot was completed in August 2015 and is expected to capture 443,000 gallons of storm water annually that would otherwise be lost as site runoff. Through installed sensors, EPA is monitoring performance data to gain a better understanding of permeable pavement performance over time and help improve future designs of permeable paver lots. The GI parking lot is also serving as an educational platform for the school. GI approaches to storm water management will be incorporated into the school's curriculum, and students will have the opportunity to use the sensor data and see the permeable pavers in action.
WORTHY OF MENTION
Worthy of mention is the Project Award presented to the Department of Defense for their Smart Power Infrastructure Demonstration for Energy Reliability and Security (SPIDERS) Joint Capability Technology Demonstration in Hawaii and Colorado. It was a collaborative effort between the Department of Defense (DOD); the Department of Energy; the Department of Homeland Security; and five Department of Energy National Laboratories. The project was designed to reduce the "unacceptably high risk" of extended electric grid outages by developing the capability to island DOD installations while maintaining operational surety and security while also efficiently managing an installation's electric power and consumption. The project delivered cyber-secure smart microgrids at three DOD installations in Hawaii and Colorado, providing the intelligence to maximize the efficient use of existing and new generators, batteries, and solar photovoltaics. The final phase, completed in fiscal year 2015, increased both scale and complexity. It was the first base-wide microgrid in the DOD with the capability of long-term power using onsite industrial quality generating equipment integrated with solar energy and stationary energy storage, as well as the ability to generate up to $1 million through ancillary services to the local utility.