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Navy Evaluates New Technologies as Part of Energy-Saving Efforts

The Naval District Washington (NDW) has several improvement projects underway to reduce energy consumption ranging from testing experimental technologies to replacing light bulbs at a ballpark.

The Energy Policy Act of 2005 mandates that federal agencies reduce their energy consumption 30 percent by 2015, based on a baseline year of 2003, said David Capozzoli, Naval Facilities Engineering Command (NAVFAC) Washington utility and energy product line coordinator.

Since energy use is based on use per square foot the Navy can construct new buildings as long as the consumption is decreasing per square foot, according to Capozzoli.

Last year, several energy conservation projects were funded throughout the region by the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act (ARRA) including solar systems installed on the roofs of buildings at Naval Support Facility (NSF) Anacostia, Naval Support Activity (NSA) Annapolis, Naval Air Station (NAS) Patuxent River and NSF Carderock.

These projects, titled Various Energy Improvements, included new ball field lighting, HVAC and steam line improvements, new ground source heat pumps and various HVAC improvements.

In February, the Navy announced its plans to retrofit the lighting at two bases in California, which is expected to cut lighting costs by 60 percent.

The Navy is also evaluating emerging technologies through pilot programs across the region under the Technical Validation Program. After trials, these technologies will be evaluated by the Naval Facility Engineering Service Center (NFESC).

These projects include a solar roof with small solar panels built into the roof’s membrane at a building at NAS Patuxent River, the use of spectrally enhanced lighting in Building 166 at the Washington Navy Yard, where the lights operate in a different area of the spectrum so personnel will not notice the reduced lighting levels, and a new boiler control technology at the U.S. Naval Academy.

Renewable energy projects at naval and army installations are a big part of an effort by the entire Defense Department agencies to meet its internal goal of generating 25 percent of all energy from renewable sources by 2025. Last year, the U.S. military launched several “green” initiatives including solar and wind projects.

The Navy is also trying to increase awareness among all its tenants that they can help save energy by turning off lights at the end of the day, consolidating kitchen equipment, removing personal heaters from work spaces and turning off computers.

The Naval Sea Systems Command (NAVSEA) is also doing its part by running its ships more efficiently. As an example, Navy ships saved 386,000 barrels of fuel during the first half of fiscal year 2010 as part of the Incentivized Energy Conservation (i-ENCON) initiative. This initiative is part of the Navy’s efforts to reduce total energy consumption on naval ships.

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