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News > A little bit goes a long way
A little bit goes a long way

Posted 5/15/2013   Updated 5/15/2013 Email story   Print story


by Staff Sgt. Amber R. Kelly-Herard
Air Mobility Command Public Affairs

5/15/2013 - SCOTT AIR FORCE BASE, Ill.  -- Energy-saving efforts can require a lot of work, time and money...or not.

Air Mobility Command is one of only two major commands surpassing facility energy conservation goals, according to the Col. Ken Smith, AMC Operations Division chief.

Aviation is AMC's biggest energy consumer, but facility energy costs are also significant. It is up to Mobility Airmen to seek ways to reduce facility energy costs to keep the command on track with conservation goals.

For example, at Joint Base Charleston, S.C., Travis Ellis, 437th Maintenance Operations Squadron facility manager, brought some lessons from home to save energy.

"Treat your workplace like your home and act like it's your money," said the Jacksonville, Fla., native. "The little things add up to save money."

Ellis is not just a facility manager, he is the facility manager liaison for the other 437th Maintenance Group facility managers.

He and his team of facility managers use smart strips to turn down computer accessories when not in use. The lights also turn off if there is no activity in the room. Another tactic they employ is posting stickers by light switches reminding people to turn off the lights. They also provide weekly energy saving tips to their units.

"We do the best we can to save money and do the right thing to save as much as we can," Ellis said.

Another facility manager, Ron Reese, 87th Medical Support Squadron, Joint Base McGuire-Dix-Lakehurst, N.J., has been setting the example for the rest of JB MDL when it comes to energy saving initiatives.

In 2008, the 87th MDSS installed 420 solar panels, saving about $50,000 annually. The following year, similar to JB CHS, the squadron installed 525 automatic light switches to turn off lights after inactivity in the room. In 2012, the squadron installed a new high-efficiency building automation system saving an average of 28 to 30 percent in gas, water and electricity usage each month. They also set standard heating and cooling set points for winter and summer timeframes. Last year, the squadron installed a tankless hot water system, also known as hot water on demand, to save 10 to 20 percent more than the previous system.

Reducing energy consumption is a team effort. Thanks to Mobility Airmen like Travis Ellis and Ron Reese, AMC continues to chip away at the command's utility bills.

If you have energy conservation ideas please talk with your facility manager or civil engineering squadron.

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