Per Lyse Rasmussen, Assistant Defense Attaché and Export Advisor
On February 27, 2014 I had the pleasure of participating in The American Council on Renewable Energy (ACORE) National Defense and Security Initiative Executive Meeting.
ACORE National Defense and Security Initiative brought together industry and other leaders to examine the challenges and opportunities related to greater use of renewable energy and energy efficiency in support of the national defense of the US and the warfighter.
As the single largest consumer of energy in the US, the Department of Defense (DoD) has embarked on an ambitious program of expanded renewable energy generation on bases and in the field, with a goal of producing 25% of its energy from renewable sources by 2025. Renewable energy is not just a “policy objective” for the armed forces, but also an “operational imperative”. The deployable and decentralized energy production possibilities offered by renewable sources, and enabling technologies like microgrids, have tremendous implications for the safety, security, and effectiveness of the military. Renewable energy and efficiency improvements can increase warfighters capability, enhance the energy security of its installations, and cut operational and military base costs.
In partnership with the DoD, ACORE has launched an initiative to examine strategies, opportunities and challenges related to expanded use of renewable energy in support of national defense. The initiative highlights innovative ways the purchasing power of DoD and the ingenuity of private sector industries and financiers can be used to lower costs and support the military’s mission. It identifies mechanisms to help DoD achieve mission objectives, save taxpayer expenditures, and reduce barriers to renewable energy deployment.
The keynote speech was given by former US Senator Slade Gorton and the agenda for the meeting included representatives from DoD and its services. The speakers included Edward Thomas Morehouse, Principal Deputy Assistant Secretary of Defense, Operational Energy Plans and Programs; Lisa Jung, Acting Director, Facilities Energy and Privatization, Office of the Deputy Under Secretary of Defense (Installations and Energy); Bob Steinberg, Energy Security Specialist, Department of Energy (DOE); Alan King, Execution Director, Army Energy Initiatives Task Force (EITF); Rear Admiral Kevin R. Slates, Director, Chief of Naval Operations Energy and Environmental Readiness Division (OPNAV N45); Commander David Kang, Director for Shore Energy, Office of the Deputy Assistant Secretary of the Navy for Energy; and the Honorable William (Bill) C. Anderson, Strategic Development Executive, Eaton Corporation (former Assistant Secretary of the US Air Force for Installations, Environment and Logistics).
This ACORE meeting was very successful and gave the participants the opportunity to have a free and open exchange with energy leaders from DoD.
ACORE launched the 2014 Renewable Energy for Military Installations: 2014 Industry Report. The report can be found on ACORE’s homepage: http://www.acore.org/.