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US Army gets Greener – Aiming for Net Zero

The US Army has announced a number of programs for a reduced overall carbon footprint over the last two to three years. There were proposals such as hydrogen powered tanks and solar powered tents for the soldiers. The latest announcement by the army regarding future green plans is much more ambitious compared to even the ones stated. The US Army is aiming at all the Army outposts in the country to be net zero. This will be done with the help of the National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL) part of the US department of Energy.

The “Army Vision for Net Zero means not only Net Zero energy, it is a holistic program that will aim at net zero energy, water as well as waste. The net zero is looked on as a force multiplier that will assist in stewarding resources as well as managing costs.

Defense costs are one of the most massive causes for the national debt in the United States, and the new plan will be killing two birds with one stone – in the way that it will ensure a reduction in expenditure as well as the carbon footprint. The military having decided to join the ranks with environmental friendliness, many people are beginning to ask why the other government areas can not do the same.

Executive order 12514 is an order that calls for all newly built structures to have net zero energy ratings by 2030, a thirty per cent cut in use of water and a fifty per cent reduction of waste that goes to landfills. The National Defense Authorization Act also has mandated in addition to this that the Army shall acquire or produce twenty five per cent of energy from renewable sources by 2025. Reducing the numbers is the first priority.

In fact, the initiative has a role model already – Fort Bliss. Fort Bliss military base has a number of environmental installations. There is solar day lighting in the café facilities, the gym and the ware house. The windows are energy efficient. The air conditioning and heating systems have utility monitoring and control in more than seventy buildings.

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