October marks the observance of Energy Action Month throughout U.S. government agencies including the Air Force.
EAM is a reminder of the importance energy plays in the Air Force’s mission, how it helps to increase Air Force combat capability and how important it is for communities to protect energy and water resources.
Airmen play a key role in achieving energy goals by making energy usage a consideration in all that we do. EAM not only highlights individual actions people can take to enhance communities, but it also highlights steps the government is taking to conserve energy and enhance resiliency.
Luke Air Force Base in Arizona has taken large steps in an effort to continue being environmentally conscious and reduce its power intake. Earlier in the year Luke commissioned a three-megawatt solar project in base housing.
“We have generated 4.2 megawatt hours of electricity since January 2018,” said Christine Archie, 56th Civil Engineer Squadron energy manager. “That is about 10% of total base electricity usage!”
The base tracks energy usage on all of the high energy consuming buildings. From the data, they can see where changes need to be made and make project proposals to create more energy efficient buildings. Luke also keeps the base standard temperature set point to 78 degrees during the summer months which saves wear-and-tear on the equipment.
“We perform “energy audits” on our facilities that make up 75 percent of the total energy consumption on Luke,” said Archie. “This includes evaluation for lighting, HVAC, insulation and roofing upgrades. We have three multi-facility energy and water reduction projects currently programmed. These audits occur every four years.”
Two ways to save energy and money are adjusting the thermostat and using energy saving appliances. One degree can save about 2-3 percent on your energy bill and energy saving appliances can cut your bill by up to 30 percent.
While applying energy saving tips to your daily lives, remember that every effort counts. Even small changes in a local community member’s daily habits lead to substantial progress and savings when developed across the Air Force.