NEWS | Nov. 1, 2011

Joint Base Charleston takes second in AMC’s Facility Energy Incentive Award program

By Capt. Kathleen Ferrero Air Mobility Command Public Affairs

The red carpet unrolled as Air Mobility Command honored its energy efficiency superstars, wrapping up Energy Awareness Month with a celebration of innovation.

Both the facility and aviation fuel efficiency offices recognized a total of six individuals and 42 units with awards and incentives for outstanding energy stewardship.

Joint Base Charleston was recognized by the Installations and Mission Support Directorate as one of the top three wings that excelled at saving energy on the ground.

Travis Air Force Base received the top prize of $100,000, JB Charleston, in second, received $75,000 and Little Rock Air Force Base received $50,000.

This is the third year of AMC's Facility Energy Incentive Award program.

"This is just another example of the quality of personnel we have at Joint Base Charleston," said Col. Richard McComb, Joint Base Charleston commander. "This award isn't due to the work of one squadron or unit or even one person. It was a group effort during the course of many months. It was a combination of new ideas and new ways of accomplishing our mission in conjunction with the little things we do day to day, from turning off computer monitors to shutting off the lights when an office is empty."

Wing leaders can use the money at their discretion but are encouraged to reinvest it in future initiatives, said Steve Kalmer, AMC energy and utilities engineering program manager.

For example, last year Dover Air Force Base reinvested its $50,000 incentive in a solar hot water system for one of its dormitories, with construction scheduled to begin in January, said Charles Mikula at the 436th Civil Engineer Squadron. Joint Base McGuire-Dix-Lakehurst used its $75,000 to help fund an 18-vehicle solar carport structure, said Barry Miller, base resource efficiency manager.

With its FY10 award of $100,000, Travis Air Force Base purchased two vertical axis wind turbines to install on the golf course and invested in a human powered gym, which would use retrofitted elliptical machines to capture energy generated by the exercisers, said Allison Greco, 60th Civil Engineer Squadron.

On the installations side of the house, Travis Air Force Base led the individual and unit-level honors this year, receiving more than $200,000 in combined incentives. During FY 2011, Team Travis worked on new energy projects that are expected to reap more than double the investment in savings.

As part of their effort, they conducted a rigorous awareness campaign that helped to slash electricity use by 7 percent in just one month, thanks in part to individual top winner Allison Greco of the 60th Civil Engineer Squadron.

Mobility Air Forces leadership, along with the AMC Fuel Efficiency Office, also recognized standouts in aviation fuel savings for the first time this year.

Honorees received cash incentives as part of their efforts - and there is more to come, said Col. Bobby Fowler, AMC Fuel Efficiency Office director. He said they will also recognize the top three overall winners at the Airlift/Tanker Association Convention and Symposium Nov. 3-6.

The Air Force is the second largest consumer of energy in the federal government and has set multiple goals to reduce consumption and increase energy security.

As AMC leans forward to support these goals, mission accomplishment remains the ultimate goal.

Col. Kevin Trayer, AMC Fuel Efficiency Office director of operations, said "effectiveness in mobility air forces" is the cornerstone of what AMC is doing in its energy conservation efforts.

"Getting (resources) to the warfighter on the ground is our first priority. As we accomplish that, we also exercise the responsibility of being good stewards of our nation's resources," Trayer said.