Energy Solutions...Fueling the Mission

  • Published
  • By Colonel Benjamin McMullen
  • acting 1st Special Operations Wing Vice Comman
In 1991, President George Bush formally declared October as energy awareness month. President Bush did so during a time of great enlightenment regarding America's energy use, with the Gulf War highlighting how dependent our country was on foreign oil. 

Unfortunately, several years later, we still find ourselves relying too heavily on foreign energy sources to sustain our economy and our national security. Energy independence is now a top national priority. 

To have true success in energy independence, each and every individual must constantly look for ways to reduce demand on limited energy resources. All of us must embrace a new culture of smart energy use. For Hurlburt Field, October 2009 marks a new beginning in our efforts to wisely manage energy consumption. 

As members of the military and also individuals who live in the surrounding communities, we all must rise to the challenge to take opportunities to improve individual awareness, assess professional and personal energy needs, and identify areas for improved energy management. In order to help accomplish these goals, we have planned three events throughout the month of October designed to educate and inform the base populace about smart energy use. 

The first event is an exhibit on Oct. 15 at the Base Exchange. The event will highlight energy conservation tips and principles that can be used in both residential and light-industrial applications. In addition, there will be displays of advanced energy-saving technologies to include an electric vehicle and a ground source heat pump. 

The second event will be held at The Warehouse on Oct. 21. Various local vendors will showcase their different energy conservation products and practices. The event will serve as a good opportunity for home owners, renters, facility managers and program managers to become familiar with a range of available products and services that could optimize energy use. 

Energy Awareness Month will culminate with Energy Day on October 27. During Energy Day, we will take a few hours out of the day to assess the energy demands associated with our workplace duties and consider ways to reduce that demand. On this day, we also encourage everyone to try an energy-saving tactic, such as: sharing a ride to work with someone, reading an energy conservation article, learning to read your electric meter at home, or replacing incandescent light bulbs at home with compact fluorescent light bulbs. 

Solving our energy challenges is critical to preserving our military mission and our way of life. Each of us must make energy a sustained consideration in all that we do, not only during energy awareness month, but every day. I encourage everyone to personally embrace the Air Force energy campaign theme, Energy Solutions...Fueling the Mission, to ensure Hurlburt Field leads the way in achieving our shared national energy challenges.