U.S. Military Not Retreating on Clean Energy
While many government officials nervously await the outcome of the November elections and speculate as to its implications for the cleantech sector, one federal department is likely to be relatively unaffected regardless of the outcome: Defense.
According to panelists at the recent "Mission Critical: Clean Energy and the U.S. Military" event in Denver, the military's growing commitment to reducing its use of fossil fuel, for both national security and economic reasons, will not waver regardless of who's in charge in the White House or the Congress.
Senator Mark Udall of Colorado rattled off a series of statistics that underline the reasons for the military's emphasis on becoming as green as the army's uniforms:
- The military is 25 percent of government's energy burden
- The Pentagon is biggest consumer of fossil fuels in the world, burning 300,000 barrels of oil per day at a cost of more than $30 million in fuel per day
- A $1 increase in the price of oil increases DoD's energy cost by $100 million per year
- 1 out of every 50 convoys in a combat zone results in a casualty, and the Army has accrued more than 3300 fatalities in convoys since 2001
- Convoy and security costs $100 per gallon for combat zones
Udall emphasized that the military is implementing many fuel-reducing technologies because of the high human price paid in getting fuel to the front lines. "Saving energy saves lives," he said, adding that adopting clean energy technologies is "one of the most patriotic things we can do."
Article continues at ENN affiliate, Matter Network
Saluting Soldier image via Shutterstock