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Edwards CE team earns Air Force energy conservation award

EDWARDS AIR FORCE BASE, Calif. -- The 95th Air Base Wing Civil Engineering Energy Team set the Air Force standard for energy efficiency in 2010. The team was awarded the Air Force Energy Conservation Award for outstanding contributions to military engineering through achievement in design, construction, administration, research and development.

The team was judged on the following six categories: innovative new technology, environmental or non-energy benefits, energy and water savings, institutionalization and transferability, overall cost savings and results.

These new projects and accomplishments include recycling 180,000 tons of crushed concrete from 435 demolished base housing units for use on other projects; installing $800,000 in advanced electrical meters that track energy consumption digitally, allowing for more accurate readings and providing detailed information regarding energy use; and instituting the use of alternative energy base-wide.

"CE's recent initiatives have allowed for 100 percent of the base's electrical usage to be generated by renewable energy," said James Judkins, 95th Civil Engineer director. "The entire installation contributed to the award by being energy conscious and taking measures to reduce consumption."

Leading the Air Force Materiel Command in green purchases, the team developed initiatives that saved millions of dollars. Those projects included setting up solar powered parking lot lights at the Joint Strike Fighter and the 412th Test Wing Headquarters facilities and increasing roof reflectivity at the Flight Surgeon building, which reduced the heat load.

From fiscal 2003 to fiscal 2010 the base saved millions of dollars in annual energy costs.

"As a result of conservation measures and using renewable energy, we've been able to generate sizeable savings," said Mr. Judkins. "This helps ensure that the rest of the mission is properly supported and funded."

In addition to current and on-going projects, according to Mr. Judkins, the base has selected a contractor for a 3,288 acre, 440 megawatt photovoltaic solar facility through an enhanced use lease. The future solar farm will be the largest array worldwide, capable of powering 89,000 homes.