The U.S. Army has released the Net Zero Pilot Installation Initiative Progress Report for 2012, containing information useful to implementing Net Zero. The Army now plans to issue a policy this year that will expand the Net Zero Initiative to all permanent Army installations.
The Army’s Net Zero Initiative is a holistic strategy that builds upon long-standing sustainable practices and incorporates emerging best practices in building an Army-wide community to manage energy, water, and waste at Army installations. The Net Zero Initiative is recognized as a force multiplier enabling the Army to appropriately steward available resources, manage costs, and provide soldiers, families and civilians with a sustainable future.
The report details the new Net Zero hierarchies and implementation strategies. It also contains information about installation collaboration, outreach and behavior and awareness campaigns that are being conducted. Specific pilot installation activities are detailed to assist with technology solution development and implementation.
For instance, energy efficient upgrade projects at specific installations are provided including funding sources and expected outcomes.
The report details many of the Pilot installation renewable energy efforts such as the 10 kilo-watt wind turbine system installed at West Point and a 20 mega-watt photovoltaic system in development at Fort Bliss, Texas.
Best practices are detailed for each area such as the use of xeriscaping, leak detection, recycling, purple pipe installation and alternate sources for water. Key actions related to waste include Material Flow Analyses, installation surveys, and characterization studies.
The report concludes with the Army’s plans for the Net Zero Initiative for fiscal year 2013 and beyond.
Activities to institutionalize Net Zero will include working with commands, Direct Reporting Units to effectively implement Net Zero Army-wide and a comprehensive gap analysis to determine appropriate insertion points for Net Zero into existing Army policy and guidance.
The Army is fostering a Net Zero ethic by creating a culture in which installations recognize the limits of natural resources and where sustainability is embraced and re-energized to support the Army’s mission.
Since April 2011, the Army has provided technical assistance to 17 pilot installations and one state-wide Army National Guard energy pilot, striving towards Net Zero Energy, Water, Waste or all three.
These pilots are serving as test beds to institutionalized Net Zero across the Army enterprise and this report provides a summary of the progress to date, identifies best practices, and discusses the Army’s plans for Instituting Net Zero Army-wide.
By Caroline Harrover, ASA (IE&E)