Fort Riley, Kansas



COMMUNITY CORNER – Energy conservation is a key to resilience

By Col. John D. Lawrence | GARRISON COMMANDER | October 20, 2017

     This year’s Energy Action Month theme is “Energy Resilience Enables Army Readiness,” because energy is key to everything the Army does. Fort Riley is a leader in this area — we are stewards of maintaining secure and reliable access to energy, water and land resources vital for the Army to perform its mission and support global operations.

     Each person on the 1st Infantry Division and Fort Riley team can contribute to conservation efforts — small efforts combine to make a big impact. Each day, we should all place appropriate materials in recycling bins, use water sparingly, turn off lights and electronics when not in use, close vents and doors in unused rooms and take care of automobile maintenance and tire pressure. Beyond these individual actions, Fort Riley, at the enterprise level, strives to make sizable strides in energy conservation.

     For example, in May this year, a long-term service performance contract was awarded to complete 15 energy conservation measures across the installation. This includes upgrading our central plants and energy management controls, HVAC upgrades, interior, exterior and street LED lighting and boiler and water conservation improvements. These services will be paid for through energy and operational savings, allowing Fort Riley to maximize our budget without increasing cost to taxpayers.

     Additionally, the Recycling Center at Camp Funston started using a single-stream processing system last year that can handle the many types of materials the center receives. They receive truckloads of materials from all across the installation, which keeps trash out of landfills. In fiscal year 2017, the Recycling Center sold about $850,000 worth of material. That money can now be used for pollution projects and to fund Directorate of Family and Morale, Welfare and Recreation programs. Recycling really does pay at Fort Riley!

     Also, in 2016, Irwin Army Community Hospital received Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design certification under the U.S. Green Building Council’s guidelines. LEED is the nationally accepted benchmark for the design, construction and operation of high-performance green buildings, giving owners and operators the tools needed to have an immediate and measurable impact on their buildings’ performance. As a LEED facility, IACH promotes five key areas of human and environmental health — sustainable site development, water savings, energy efficiency, materials selection and indoor environmental quality.

     Finally, Fort Riley was chosen in 2011 as one of six installations to participate in the Army Net Zero water program and we continue to seek ways under this program to improve energy conservation. The Army’s Net Zero initiative provides guidance for long-standing energy efficiency and sustainability practices. The strategy is designed for management of existing energy, water and solid waste programs. At Fort Riley, we strive to improve all facilities and energy usage to maintain greater conservation and security of resources.

     These are just a few examples of the multiple energy conservation initiatives across the 1st Inf. Div. and Fort Riley. With these programs — and a focus on future possibilities and day-to-day individual actions — we all can help make a difference in the world and help leave a positive legacy for future “Big Red One” families.

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