FORT CAMPBELL, Ky. – About 44 million gallons of water were recovered last year by members of the Directorate of Public Works plumbing shop who completed leak repairs big and small across the installation.
Water conservation efforts such as this enable mission readiness.
Robert Ott, energy manager, DPW, said most people tend not to think of wasting resources such as water as being damaging to anything except their water bill. However, in the event of an emergency, water and electricity are what the installation depends on to carry out everyday tasks.
Being mindful of energy consumption keeps the installation in a resilient state of preparedness should the need to deploy arise.
Energy Action Month, observed in October, is an opportunity to stress how collective efforts to achieve energy security throughout the Army contribute to mission readiness. This year’s theme is “Energy Resilience Enables Army Readiness.”
Conserving water on post saves Fort Campbell money. These savings occur when the installation’s cost of treating water declines because the amount of both water and wastewater treatment decreases.
“We’re paying for the energy and effort to treat the water on one end and to pump it from the spring to the water plant to treat it,” Ott said. “Then, if you waste it, it’s going back to the wastewater plant to get treated again and just costing us unnecessary dollars.”
Mark Linkous, public utilities specialist, DPW, said the importance of water conservation on the installation isn’t just a matter of saving money. Fort Campbell uses spring water, so the supply is finite.
The absence of a municipality combined with overuse of the limited resource can lead to restrictive measures being put in place to protect the supply, he said.
During his tenure at Fort Campbell, Linkous has witnessed this happen twice.
“They measure what the height of the water is in the well and when it starts to get down to a certain level, we curtail water usage,” he said. “We ask people not to wash cars, water lawns or irrigate ballfields.”
Restrictive measures normally take place during the dry summer months because of the lack of rain to replenish the aquifer, Linkous added.
Turn in work orders
The easiest way to prevent the misuse of Fort Campbell’s spring water is to submit work orders when a problem arises instead of letting it go or trying to fix it yourself, Linkous said. Commodes that run endlessly tend to be the biggest culprit of unnecessary water loss on the installation, he said.
“We’ve got a warehouse somewhere on post that has gone up to 773,000 gallons a month,” Linkous said. “Now, a warehouse normally just has a male and female bathroom, but we know that there’s a toilet running there, so it’s taken it from 288,000 gallons in August, which was high then, to 773,000 gallons of water a month.”
Ott said small but easily fixed issues such as the water stopper in a toilet tank can lead to massive water loss in the span of a couple months.
“These leaks can be pretty large,” Ott said. “A flapper that’s failed in a commode can run a million gallons through a building pretty quick in a month or two.”
The solution, they said, is to submit work orders to avoid wasting one of Fort Campbell’s most precious resources.
For maintenance emergencies in government buildings, call 270-798-1200. For non-emergency issues, fill out the form at https://home.army.mil/campbell/index.php/work-orders. For all maintenance requests for barracks, Soldiers must use the Army Maintenance App that is available through the Digital Garrison App, download at the App Store for Apple devices and Google Play for Android.
For maintenance issues in Campbell Crossing housing communities, call 931-431-3966 or visit Campbell Crossing Resident Services at https://www.rentcafe.com to place a work order.