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First in AMC for energy conservation

Posted 12/21/2012   Updated 12/21/2012 Email story   Print story


by 2nd Lt. Rachelle Smith
92nd Air Refueling Wing Public Affairs

12/21/2012 - FAIRCHILD AIR FORCE BASE, Wash. -- Air Mobility Command officials named Fairchild Air Force Base the first place winner of the 2012 AMC Energy Incentive Awards Dec. 4th.

The awards were designed to recognize the top bases and people in the command in energy conservation and improvement. Fairchild was awarded $100,000.

Innovative energy conservation methods by both 92nd Civil Engineer Squadron and 92nd Operations Group helped accomplish this achievement.

"Our energy team did so much work to make our energy program strong," said Lt. Col. Patrick Obruba, 92nd CES commander.

From September to October 2012, a team of Airmen went through every building looking for inefficiencies from something as small as old light fixtures to large cracks in hangar doors, said Obruba.

"Winning this award really made the work worth it," said Senior Airman Seth Crawford, 92nd CES heating ventilation and air conditioning technician. "It took a long time, but I'm glad to see we got something out of it."

Using an energy management control system, Fairchild reduced energy consumption and costs by thousands of dollars. One of the system functions includes monitoring if a building is being heated or cooled without any occupants. EMCS can turn off energy to avoid unnecessary waste.

"It's a great thing because there is no negative mission impact," said Jeffrey Cook-Coyle, 92nd CES resource energy manager. "Airmen are not affected because they are not using buildings that are not using heat."

The 92nd CES energy management office has consistently aimed toward implementing projects proven to save the Air Force money, while making energy usage more effective. In 2011, $1.6 million was spent on natural gas. Due to upgrades and efforts made, in 2012, only $1.4 million was spent, said Cook-Coyle.

Another $2.3 million was saved on fuel costs by the 92nd OG. For deployments to the Transit Center at Manas, flights were directed over the North Pole instead of across the Atlantic Ocean during suitable weather conditions.

"Fairchild aircrews are the most innovative aviators I have ever met," said Lt. Col. Patrick O'Brien, 93rd Air Refueling Squadron commander. "Their abstract thinking saved the Air Force real money, got us to the fight quicker and allowed us to spend an extra day with our families."

"A dollar not used on utilities is a dollar we can use on our Airmen," said Ronald Daniels, 92nd CES deputy commander.

Fairchild also won the Reducing Energy Appreciation Program Award in August 2012 for its energy and water conservation efforts in 2011.

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