CAMP PENDLETON, Calif. --
Brig. Gen. Edward D. Banta, Commanding General, Marine Corps Installations – West, set targets for the implementation of Camp Pendleton’s renewable energy projects in a new policy letter
released June 10.
The policy letter
outlined the base’s energy priorities, in support of Marine Corps operating forces overseas.
These priorities coincide with Secretary of the Navy Ray Mabus’ mandate that at least half of the energy requirements for shore-based Navy installations must come from renewable energy sources by 2020 during an energy forum earlier this year.
“Renewable energy is a key component of energy security,” said Steven Wolfe, facilities manager for MCI-West. “Energy security is the command’s ability to continue to operate the installation without significant reliance on the commercial grid. In times of national emergency or natural disaster, renewable energy provides us with a source of energy for our most critical operations.”
The policy letter outlined tasks for MCI-West installations commanders such as evaluating renewable energy projects, taking into consideration current and future operations, training, technology and impact on the environment.
“The driver behind these renewable energy requirements is in fact the reduction of greenhouse gases,” said Wolfe. “Renewable energy is essentially the development of energy without adverse greenhouse gases. This has a global impact and has a positive effect on issues such as global warming, and rising sea-levels rising.”
MCI-West installations commanders are also responsible for developing future projects using Life Cycle Cost analysis as the primary means for choosing the best natural methods to generate power. Life Cycle Cost analysis compares the present costs of implementation and future costs of maintenance for potential projects to determine which projects can provide more value.
“The policy letter renews the command’s commitment to the development of renewable energy but does so specifically with an eye toward the economic impact,” said Wolfe. “The new policies focus on lower costs of energy, reducing the overall bill on the installation which in turn leads to more resources available for the training and deployment of our Marines.”
In addition to Life Cycle Cost analysis, the new policies also emphasize the specific needs of each installation, regional considerations and the environmental benefits of the proposed projects must also be factored in when determining projects.
MCI-West is responsible for managing and conserving installation real estate to ensure existing and planned training areas, air space, housing areas, maintenance facilities and other capabilities that sustain mission readiness while simultaneously developing renewable energy.