The U.S. Army joins its sister military services and the Department of Defense Sept. 16 at recognition ceremonies in Montreal to receive the Environmental Protection Agency's Best of the Best Award, and the United Nations Partner Award.

The Montreal Protocol is widely considered to be one of the most successful environmental treaties of all time. In the last decade, the ozone layer has begun to recover, and full recovery is predicted for the middle of this century - assuming a continued worldwide commitment to the phase-out of ozone-depleting substances. Much progress has been made, and more needs to be done.

"This award clearly demonstrates that our acquisition and procurement policies can support important environmental initiatives while providing the utmost support to our soldiers and our mission. Combating global environmental challenges such as Stratospheric Ozone Depletion requires a true team effort," said Ms. Tina Ballard, Deputy Assistant Secretary of the Army (Policy and Procurement) who will represent the U.S. Army at the ceremony.

The range of Army success is impressive: replacement of CFC-based heating and cooling applications in tactical shelters, field ambulances, and other vehicles; elimination of ODS solvents from production, maintenance and repair of vehicles, aircraft, and ammunition; retrofit of fire suppression systems in Abrams Main Battle Tanks, Bradley Fighting Vehicles, Multiple Launch Rocket Systems, Field Artillery Ammunition Supply Vehicles and watercraft; and deployment of the world's first non-halon, crew compartment explosion suppression system to eliminate halon-reliance in new ground combat systems.

"The Army's reduction and management of ozone depleting substances represents our commitment to achieve mission success by effectively protecting Soldiers and the equipment they need, while at the same time doing the right thing for the environment and society-at-large. Our ODS efforts further serve as a great example of the integrated, long-term team approach required for the Army to achieve sustainability in everything we do," said Tad Davis, Deputy Assistant Secretary of the Army for Environment, Safety and Occupational Health.

The 2007 EPA Best of the Best Award For Halon-Free Miltary Ground Vehicle Fire Suppression Systems is being awarded to Mr. Steven J. McCormick, who has worked for over twenty-five years in the Army's Tank-Automotive RD&E Center's (TARDEC) Survivability group and is currently leader of its Damage Reduction Team.

The Army was the first military organization to declare the majority of their ODS applications "non-critical" and develop policy for their facility and weapon system managers to develop and replace these substances.

Other recipients of the EPA's Best of the Best Awards this year include the Department of Defense, the United States Navy, the United States Air Force, and the Navy Sea Systems Command. Other recipients of the UN's Partner Award this year are the Department of Defense and the United States Navy.

Across the planet, major corporations make dramatic strides replacing ozone-depleting substances (ODS) with safer substitutes, which will slow and eventually reverse the thinning of the ozone layer as well as provide important climate benefits. The Montreal Protocol on Substances that Deplete the Ozone Layer has been signed by almost every country in the world: more than 190 countries are now Parties to the treaty.

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For more information please contact Dave Foster at 703-697-5344.