By Paul Hora/DPWFebruary 23, 2012
FORT BRAGG, N.C. - Once again Fort Bragg is being recognized as a leader and innovator in advanced energy technology implementation. The 82nd Area Central Energy Heating Plant off of Campobello Road is the site of a cogeneration unit or combined heat and power plant where an engine is being used to simultaneously generate both electricity and useful heat.
This unit produces a maximum of up to 5 megawatts of electrical power and contributes greatly to the heating demands in the vicinity. This is a small portion of Fort Bragg's total electrical requirement, which can reach 134 megawatts during the hottest days of the summer.
All thermal power plants emit a certain amount of heat during electricity generation. This heat can be released into the natural environment through cooling towers, flue gas, or by other means. By contrast, the CHP at Fort Bragg captures some or all of the heat by-product for heating purposes.
In the 82nd Plant, this heat byproduct is utilized in facilities that need conditioned air spaces and domestic hot water demands either very close to the plant or in the distribution system.
The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency recognizes Department of Defense facilities for emission reductions and energy savings as well as implementation of practical technology which makes application and economic sense in the areas where it's deployed.
On Feb. 7, the EPA recognized two DoD facilities with the Energy Star Combined Heat and Power award for taking an efficient, clean and reliable approach to generating power and thermal energy from a single source. The CHP awards were presented to the following facilities at the International District Energy Association's Annual Campus Energy Conference held in Arlington, Va.: U.S. Army Garrison Fort Bragg; U.S. Marine Corps Air Ground Combat Center, Twentynine Palms, Calif.
By using CHP technology, the award winners demonstrated leadership and a commitment to protecting people's health and the environment while reporting annual energy savings of $6.8 million.
"I congratulate these military bases for leading by example in the efforts to reduce pollution, improve energy efficiency and cut energy costs," said Gina McCarthy, assistant administrator for EPA's Office of Air and Radiation. "These advanced CHP systems give us reliable, clean and cost cutting ways to keep our military bases powered and our environment protected."
The CHP systems avoided carbon pollution equal to that from the electricity used by more than 4,000 homes. The CHP systems also increase the installations' energy security and reliability because the systems can run independently in the event of a power outage. As the largest U.S. energy consumer, DoD recognizes that reliable energy supplies for its military installations are critical to the nation's security.
The Fort Bragg Directorate of Public Works Energy Program continues to be committed to ensuring that energy reduction mandates are met and that continuous movement is made toward a net zero installation, said Gregory Bean, director of DPW.