By Mass Communication Specialist 1st Class Pedro A. Rodriguez, NDW Public Affairs
WASHINGTON (Oct. 7, 2015)—Naval District Washington (NDW) is celebrating national Energy Action Month this October.
The President has proclaimed October 2015 to be Energy Action Month. For the Navy and Marine Corps Energy Action Month is an opportunity to reinforce how critical energy is to accomplishing its mission, and to encourage Sailors and Marines to look for ways to optimize their energy use to boost warfighting capabilities.
Designed to inform and educate personnel about energy consumption and conservation, the campaign also hopes to encourage energy conservation and responsible usage by bringing awareness to the forefront.
“We, individually, can affect energy security in a massive way by ensuring we make the most of every Watt we expend and every gallon of fuel we burn. The recurring threat of government shutdown, hitting the debt ceiling, and sequestration make it clear that our resources are limited, and therefore must be maximized,” said Lt. Cmdr. James Shefchik, NDW Energy Program Manager. “While it takes money to purchase energy, energy is an independent resource with limited availability. In addition to the budget limitations, there are absolute limitations that must be valued.”
This year’s campaign theme is “Power-Presence,” which is fundamental to the Navy and Marine Corps’ mission to ensure stability, deter potential adversaries, and present options in times of crisis, and they depend on access to secure and reliable energy.
“Expanding our ability to use alternative forms of energy increases our energy security by reducing dependency on foreign oil,” said Shefchik.
To promote awareness within the region, NDW will be conducting a series of activities including an Energy Biggest Loser competition between installations. The region and installation PAO’s will promote the contest in the month of October and provide tips and periodic updates throughout November.
“The Energy Biggest Loser contest uses the spirit of friendly competition to encourage energy use reduction across the Region,” said Shefchik. “Each of the six NDW installations, including their major special areas, will compete. We will compare the electric usage in the month of November with the expected electric use. The prevailing Installation will win an additional $70,000 to fund a facilities project of the CO's choosing; second place will gain $50,000 and third $30,000.”
According to Shefchik, in addition to the Biggest Loser Competition, there will be a poster and video competition open to anyone affiliated with the base, including dependents. Other activities include recognition to the best building energy monitor. These competitions are all done in the spirit of energy action and reducing personal energy footprints; the winners will be recognized by NDW Commandant Rear Adm. Yancy Lindsey for their contributions.
In 2009, Secretary of the Navy (SECNAV) Ray Mabus set five energy goals for DON: increase alternative energy use Navy-wide, increase alternative energy ashore, reduce non-tactical petroleum use, sail the "Great Green Fleet," and acquire energy efficiency, according to a 2012 DON Strategy for Renewable Energy report.
Shefchik said “the Navy’s mission is to win wars, deter aggression, and to maintain freedom of the seas. Energy is central to all action. Every decision, whether for a command, a program, a project or an individual has energy impact. Realizing the inherent energy decisions allow leaders at all levels to choose more effective use of our limited energy resources.”
“As we find ways through everyday action to minimize our energy footprint, we free energy to make positive ripples throughout the Navy,” said Shefchik.
As these plans move forward, the NDW/NAVFAC Washington team continues to set the standard for energy efficiency and awareness.
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For more news from Naval District Washington, visit www.navy.mil/local/ndw