Department of Defense Releases Roadmap to Transform Energy Use in Military Operations

The Department of Defense released today the Operational Energy Strategy  Implementation Plan. The plan establishes seven specific targets and associated  near-term activities keyed to the goals of the Operational Energy Strategy,  which was released in June 2011. Together, the Strategy and Implementation Plan  found at http://energy.defense.gov will serve as a roadmap to transform the way the  Department of Defense uses energy in military operations.

Secretary of Defense Leon E. Panetta said, “Smart use of energy can be a  strategic advantage for the U.S. military against our adversaries. As we  continue to invest in the best military force to defend America today and  tomorrow, I want the department to harness the best energy innovations at all  levels, from the individual warfighter to the largest installation, to enhance  our operational effectiveness and deliver more bang for the buck.”

To oversee the execution of these efforts, Panetta has directed the Assistant  Secretary of Defense for Operational Energy Plans and Programs Sharon E. Burke  to co-lead a Defense Operational Energy Board with a designee of the chairman of  the Joint Chiefs of Staff. The chairman has designated the Director for  Logistics, Lt. Gen. Brooks Bash.

“By building energy considerations into the department’s processes, including  the way we buy equipment and value energy when employing the force, we can  improve our warfighting ability while lowering risks and costs for military  missions,” said Burke.

The department has already made significant combat energy improvements. In  Afghanistan, U.S. forces have fielded improved generators, microgrids,  energy-efficient shelters, air conditioners, and tactical solar to reduce fuel  use on the battlefield and cut the number of fuel convoys vulnerable to attack.  At sea, the Navy has deployed shipboard hybrid-electric drives, stern flaps and  hull and propeller coatings to improve efficiency. By optimizing flight  patterns, routing, and cargo loading, the Air Force will avoid $500 million in  fuel costs in the next five years.

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