October is Energy Action Month: ‘I am Air Force Energy’

  • Published
  • By Ed Sidenstricker
  • 99th Civil Engineer Squadron energy program specialist
Summer has come to a close, and we're all looking forward to more tolerable temperatures in the coming weeks. Even better news -- this means your power bill is likely to go down.

But if you think you pay a lot for energy, imagine paying Nellis' bill of approximately $1 million per month! It's money that could be spent on our Airmen, their readiness, or our weapons systems.

October is National Energy Action Month. Since 1991, the Department of Energy has used this month to kick off its annual energy awareness/action campaign, promoting efficient uses of energy.

The theme throughout the Air Force this year is, "I am Air Force Energy." It aims to put Airmen at the center of the campaign and increase awareness and commitment, because everyone has the power to make a difference -- the "Power of One." 

The federal government is the largest consumer of energy in the U.S.; the Department of Defense is the largest consumer of energy within the federal government; and finally, the Air Force is the largest consumer of energy within the DOD. Thus, the Air Force has the most potential for savings not only in the area of aviation fuel, but also in facility energy conservation.

This year's theme further supports the Air Force's mission to fly, fight and win in air, space and cyberspace. It reinforces its energy strategy to reduce demand, increase supply and change the culture.

Nellis has had an objective to reduce energy intensity by three percent a year dating back to Fiscal Year 2003, and a cumulative goal of 30 percent reduction by FY 2015. From FY 2003 to fiscal 2014, energy intensity on base has actually decreased by 21 percent. This success has been largely due to the men and women of Nellis doing their part in conserving energy.

Over the last several years, the 99th Civil Engineer Squadron energy team has performed many energy-efficient projects, such as replacing 32 boilers with high-efficiency condensing boilers and installing lighting occupancy sensors in a large number of buildings on base. There are also a number of energy conservation self-help initiatives that can make a difference.

Here are some suggestions to help the base continue to meet its goals:
· Maintain space temperature standards; set temperatures on thermostats no lower than 76 degrees Fahrenheit during the summer months and no higher than 69 degrees Fahrenheit during winter months
· Turn off interior lights at the end of the work day or when they are not needed
· Report any exterior lighting left on during daylight hours to facility maintenance at 702-652-2303
· Replace incandescent light bulbs with compact fluorescent bulbs
· Turn off computer monitors, printers, scanners and other office equipment at the end of the work day. Desktop computers connected to the network must remain on for security updates
· Use of personal appliances, such as coffee makers, refrigerators and microwaves, should be minimized to the fullest extent and consolidated to break rooms only.

Each of us has an important part to play in conserving energy. Make energy a consideration in all we do. If you have energy conservation questions, comments or suggestions, please contact your base energy manager, Jeffrey Blazi, at 702-652-7790 or the base energy program specialist, Ed Sidenstricker, at 702-652-7786.