Energy awareness is all the buzz on Hill Air Force Base during the month of October. Reducing energy consumption is an Air Force goal and all military personnel, civilians and contractors working on Hill and all Defense Department installations are key figures in achieving energy goals.
Established in 2012, October was appointed as National Energy Action Month by the federal government to provide leadership in energy management, resiliency and awareness. Air Force energy goals required Hill to shave energy consumption by 2.5 percent per year. Throughout the month, a variety of activities were held to promote energy awareness.
“It is a great time of year to inform and encourage change in behaviors that foster energy conservation and facilitate resilience,” said 75th Civil Engineer Squadron Energy Manager Nickolas King. “Consistent conservative behaviors have the potential to drastically cut energy costs especially when everyone participates. A little bit here and a little bit there all adds up.”
In observance with National Energy Action Month and in stride with the Air Force Energy Campaign, “Protect the Power,” Hill AFB’s Energy Management Team held energy awareness events like the Kilowatt Crackdown Energy Competition, which began Oct. 1 and will continue through the end of the calendar year. Buildings 39, 225, 237, 383, 896, 897, 1295, 2013, Utah Test and Training Range, and Little Mountain are in the thick of the competition. Building facility managers are the “Conservation Quarterbacks” who call out energy saving plays to lead their building to the win. One of the secrets of winning will be the duty of the facility manager’s assessing their buildings and calling on the occupants to be conscious energy stewards and saving energy anywhere they can.
An additional activity was held where the base’s senior leaders got to hear Hill’s utility partners speak on Planning for Future Energy Demand and Resiliency. Speakers included City Light and Power’s Rich Houghton, Dominion Energy’s Adam Del Toro, OO-ALC Energy Manager Aaron Erickson, and 75th CES Electrical Engineer Wes Becker.
Hill Energy Management team invited Uintah Elementary School’s 6th-grade students to participate in an Energy Awareness Art Contest. The contest offered three areas for competition: Energy Conservation, Renewable Energy, and Transportation in The Future.
“We were really impressed with the student’s knowledge, talents and creativity making it difficult to choose the winners,” said King. “In the end, there were four entries chosen: Sharing first place was Julia Palmer and Emma Jefferies, second place was Averie Hill, and third place was Maya Hansen. We appreciate the opportunity in working with Principle JoAnn Hobbs and the Uintah Elementary 6th grade.”
A Hill AFB Energy Awareness Fair was also held at the Base Exchange. Base utility partners Dominion Energy and Weber Basin Water joined the Energy Management team to share information regarding offered incentives and rebates, as well as key energy saving messages. Visitors learned that they could save approximately $75 annually by replacing their home’s five most frequently used light fixtures or bulbs with LED models. They also learned they could save money and energy by lowering thermostats to 68 degrees in the winter and raising them 78 degrees in the summer, and by cleaning or replacing furnace/air-conditioning filters every month. For water, savings could be realized by keeping showers under five minutes.
Other energy and water saving tips can be found at the following websites: https://www.dominionenergy.com/home-and-small-business/ways-to-save/energy-saving-tips/save-energy-at-work-and-home, and https://energy.gov/.
The Air Force is investing in energy savings through energy savings performance contracts (ESPCs) and represents a partnership between Hill AFB and an energy service company. ESPCs allow for the Air Force to procure energy savings and facility improvements with no up-front capital costs or special appropriations from Congress. These efforts support our economy, protect the environment, and increase our energy independence in alignment with the Air Force energy and economic goals.
With Energy Action Month 2017 concluded, let us all be engaged to make Hill AFB resilient for a successful tomorrow.