Sunday, October 30, 2011

US Military to Invest $10 Billion a Year in Renewable Energy

Congress may be dithering over green energy, but the US military has no qualms about its value.

The U.S. Department of Defense (DOD) - one of the largest energy consumers in the world at 300,000 barrels of oil a day - is quickly moving toward energy efficiency and renewables to reduce risks to soldiers, enhance national energy security, and save money.

DOD is committed to getting 25% of its energy from renewables by 2025, the Air Force plans to use biofuels for 50% of domestic aviation by 2016 and the Navy will reduce fuel consumption on ships 15% by 2020.

11.3% of DOD's energy now comes from renewables, saving US taxpayers billions of dollars.

Military spending on renewable energy spiked over 300% between 2006-2009, to $1.2 billion, and is expected to exceed $10 billion a year by 2030, according to "From Barracks to the Battlefield: Clean Energy Innovation and America's Armed Forces," by the Pew Project on National Security, Energy and Climate.

DOD currently spends about $20 billion a year on energy - 75% for fuel and 25% for facilities and infrastructure, according to Pike Research.

DOD is focusing on vehicle efficiency, advanced biofuels, and energy efficiency and renewable energy at bases.

It's expected to spend $2.25 billion a year by 2015 for efficient vehicles used in the air, land, and sea, while improving the energy efficiency of its buildings around the world - more than 500,000 of them.

That level of spending will have a considerable impact on the growth of the renewable industry. It has the potential to bridge the 'valley of death' that lies between research & development and full commercialization of these technologies," says Pike Research in another report, "Renewable Energy for Military Applications." More

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