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NEWS | Oct. 6, 2011

October is Energy Action Month

By Mark Hanna 633rd Civil Engineer Squadron

It's that time of year when we begin to really think about the energy we use. The days are getting shorter and our lights are on longer. The nights are a little brisker, and toward the end of the month some of us may turn the heat on.

Just as in the spring when we prepare our work places, homes and cars for warm weather, we now prepare for the heating season. Last year we all called October Energy Awareness Month, but this year the name has changed. Being aware is no longer enough; we must convert our awareness into action by the addition of a little bit of energy, our own personal energy.

This is true for all of us whether we are civilian, military or contractor, on base, at home or going to and from either. It is up to us not only to hold the line but to reduce our energy. A few years ago I heard this while visiting at Barksdale AFB, LA, "You can't send the B-52s out every time the energy gremlins get outta hand and carpet bomb them with audits and technology. Boots on the ground is imperative to sustaining energy performance." Okay, it made more of an impact at Barksdale, being a B-52 base, but you get the idea.

Performance means goals to be met and Rick Stacey, chief of the Air Force Facility Energy Center, a division of the Air Force Civil Engineer Support Agency, Tyndall Air Force Base, FL, said the Air Force is making excellent progress toward satisfying federal energy mandates.

"Some of the more prominent goals require us to reduce energy intensity 30 percent by 2015, reduce water intensity 26 percent by 2020, and increase renewable energy to 25 percent of all electricity use by 2025," said Stacey. "But as time goes by, the goals are getting tougher. We need everyone doing all they can do to help the Air Force continue our energy program successes."

In the next few weeks I will write on three areas the Air Force has set for us where we can work together to help achieve the goals, reduce demand, increase supply, change culture.

Meanwhile, we would like to hear from you. Please send us your energy thoughts ideas and questions; you are a part of the team.