Fuel & Energy Issues Continue to Get Spotlight in US Military
Following our reports today covering the USA’s recent purchase of $3.15 billion worth of various fuels and almost $230 million worth of electricity over the past week, it seems like a fuller picture is in order. A CNN online article notes that according to the Defense Energy Support Center, the U.S. military consumed 144.8 million barrels of fuel in 2004, spending $6.7 billion. In 2005, it consumed only 128.3 million barrels, but spent $8.8 billion. For 2006, the energy support center estimates the military will need 130.6 million barrels and pay more than $10 billion.
Fears of shortages after Hurricane Katrina gave the issue even more urgency, and set in motion a cascade of events from Deputy Secretary of Defense Gordon England’s September 2005 fuel conservation memo, to by a December 2005 directive asking all defense facilities to cut their energy consumption and increase the use of renewable energy sources. The goal is reduce energy consumption by 2% each year, while increasing renewable energy use to 7.5% of total demand by 2013 and 25% by 2025.
There are certain to be procurement-related implications from these moves up and down he chain. Re-engining the USA’s 1950s-era B-52 bombers was previously dismissed as not worth it, but odds are pretty good that it will happen in the new climate. DID’s March 17, 2006 “Energy Conservation Moving Up Pentagon’s Agenda” article describes a number of other initiatives that are already underway, excerpts and links to a key report from the US Army Corps of Engineers covering future military sustainability, and offers (updated) information about the Pentagon’s upcoming inter-agency Energy Conversation events at the end. We enjoyed seeing Rep. Bartlett’s [R-MD] office quote and reference that article in the invitation to former CIA director R. James Woolsey’s upcoming talk.