The challenge has been placed to the employees of Crane Army Ammunition Activity by its commander, Col. Linwood Clark: find ways to reduce energy usage and commit to them. As stewards of the taxpayer's money, every person working at Crane Army needs to be focused reducing the amount of energy used and wasted on base.

According to CAAA Staff Engineer/Master Planner Matt Deaton, who has been charged with overseeing this initiative, it is a challenge that offers great opportunity to every employee to help the environment and CAAA. While CAAA is a tenant on Naval Support Activity, Crane, its employees can still do their part to reduce energy waste.

"There is an enormous responsibility and opportunity for us all to make a real difference within the confines of our installation," Deaton said. "Going forward there will be opportunities for everyone to contribute in the effort in meeting our energy reduction goals."

Deaton explained that this push to save energy is something that has been stressed from the highest leadership in the military.

He said, "It is not only the Army, but Dept. of Defense wide that has made energy a priority for everyone. There are numerous laws, Executive Orders and regulations currently in place that direct our actions at the installation level. Although the projects that are going to be could be very substantial and considered complicated, it should also be noted that we can all make a big difference, 10 percent or more, by using common sense practices at low or no cost to the installation."

While the push to save energy is coming from the top down, it is the individual who truly can make the plan work. There are three strong reasons why energy conservation should be done at Crane. First, saving energy saves money - the taxpayer's money. For an individual, saving energy at home means more money stays in a person's pocket. For the military employees, saving energy means tax dollars can be spent on more important programs. Second, saving energy and investing in renewable energy can help America become more economically stable. And, third, saving energy reduces the consumption of natural resources and reduces greenhouse gas emissions. It is good for the Army and it is good for the future of our planet.

Deaton already said there are things that employees can be doing to help save energy.

"Turning lights off in spaces that are not occupied, turning in trouble calls to the facilities office reporting steam and water leaks and other obvious energy wastes and not using space heaters for comfort heating are all actions that can be taken to reduce our energy consumption," he said. "If we could achieve a 10 percent reduction in energy use it would equate to $700,000 in savings as CAAA used approximately $7 million of energy in FY10."

Some of the long term goals for CAAA to meet its reduction requirements include renewable energy projects using solar and geothermal technologies. Other projects will be to replace its old steam heating infrastructure with hot water or electric heating, replace building transit siding with insulated metal panels and perform increased preventive maintenance on steam traps and other steam infrastructure. Also, new construction and major building renovations will be designed to LEED Silver standards that will ensure our new buildings use much less energy than its current buildings do.

"In order to complete our mission we must consume energy. Using our energy wisely and cutting out the waste ensures the energy we have available to us remains available and the overall security of that energy is increased," Deaton said.

CAAA was established in Oct. 1977 and is a tenant of the Navy Region Midwest, Naval Support Activity Crane. The Army activity maintains ordnance professionals and infrastructure to receive, store, ship, produce, renovate and demilitarize conventional ammunition, missiles and related components.