News Update from TCNG Staff. February 22, 2012

The U.S. Army wants you to spend all that you can spend. With a mission to generate 25 percent of its energy from renewable and alternative sources by 2025, the Army is opening its doors to private investors with the goal of raising $7.1 billion over the next 10 years.

The Army has established an Energy Initiatives Office Task Force to serve as one-stop shopping for companies interested in large-scale projects on the Army’s 5 million acres of domestic properties and other sites overseas.

The project is part of the Defense Department’s overall strategy to shift away from fossil fuels for the sake of troop safety, cost cutting and environmental benefits. Each branch of the military is developing its own programs. The Air Force, for example, is turning to biofuels to save on jet fuels. The Navy is using advanced biofuel to power boats. The Marines are using solar panels that roll up like beach mats.

The Army’s approach falls within a new strategy known as Net Zero, which seeks to reduce the overall consumption of resources on installations to an effective rate of zero. The Army is offering investors four different financing programs, each with a different Return On Investment schedule. The money will be primarily used for energy projects that replace older systems and provide a hedge against volatile energy markets, both of which the Army says pose a risk to operations. The Pentagon is also working with the Department of Energy to develop a list of projects beyond those that are base-related to include renewable solutions for vehicles and equipment used by soldiers.

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For more information about these initiatives and to read the full article, go to TCNG’s website.

The Center for the Next Generation is a nonprofit aimed at building support for advanced energy and sustainability and America’s children and families. TCNG is a new voice to help frame the critical issues that affect the next generation.

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