Energy Industry Forum to Focus on Overcoming DoD Procurement Process Hurdles for Renewable Energy Industry
American Council On Renewable Energy (ACORE) and Advanced Energy Economy (AEE) Forum Series Convenes DoD and Industry to Streamline Military Deployment of Renewable Energy Systems
Washington, D.C., May 9, 2012 –Top military officials and renewable energy businesses and organizations met today at the second forum in the multi-part series hosted by the American Council On Renewable Energy (ACORE) and Advanced Energy Economy (AEE), in order to clarify the Department of Defense's (DoD) renewable energy priorities, and overcome roadblocks to achieving the military's goals.
The forum series, being held throughout 2012 in collaboration with the DoD seeks to increase U.S. military effectiveness through the integration and deployment of renewable energy solutions on base and in the battlefield. The Department of Defense is the biggest single energy user in the U.S. and is expected to spend $150 billion on fuel and electricity over the next decade. In order to increase the energy security of its installations, DoD has embarked on an ambitious program of expanded renewable energy generation on base, coupled with focused development in enabling technologies such as microgrids.
The second forum today focused on outlining the specific technology and project priorities of each of the military services and the opportunities for integrated systems for renewables and on-site energy management; illuminating the procurement processes intended to reduce the cost of base and operational energy projects and facilitate renewable energy deployment; and leveraging private sector finance to allow the DoD to use both proven and innovative finance models to reach beyond its budgetary boundaries.
"America's continued over-reliance on fossil fuel to meet our growing energy needs is a serious and urgent threat to our national and economic security. The DoD and military services know this and are working very hard to reduce this threat with energy efficiency and by diversifying energy supplies," said Vice Admiral (Ret.) Dennis McGinn, President of ACORE. "These important forums bring together private sector leaders in renewable energy with key DoD officials to define the most effective ways to reach DoD's mission goals and to create a more secure America with clean, sustainable energy."
"The DoD's commitment to renewable energy represents an important business opportunity for the advanced energy industry to support the cause of national defense," said Graham Richard, CEO of AEE and former mayor of Fort Wayne, Indiana. "As in any large-scale transformation, finding new ways to meet the military's energy needs requires collaboration between purchasing agencies and its suppliers, with focus on the details. By convening leaders from DoD and the advanced energy industry, these forums can help promote collaboration and streamline the procurement process to serve the military better."
"In October of 2009 the Secretary of the Navy Ray Mabus outlined five energy goals for the Department of the Navy which seek to enhance our combat capabilities, increase our mission effectiveness, and reduce our vulnerabilities to foreign sources of fossil fuel," said Tom Hicks, Deputy Assistant Secretary of the Navy for Energy. "As we explore alternative and renewable energy technology, we have projects such as the 1 Gigawatt (GW) Initiative and the Experimental Forward Operating Base (ExFOB) process with our Marines to help achieve our energy goals."
"The Army recognizes the strategic role that renewable and other advanced energy technologies can play to meet operations, transportation and installation requirements," said John Lushetsky, Executive Director, U.S. Army's Energy Initiatives Task Force. "It is a top priority to make sure we are leveraging all the private sector has to offer with both product and business solutions that can cost effectively meet Army needs, now and in the in future."
Col. Peter A. Newell, Director of the U.S. Army Rapid Equipping Force added, "Soldiers operating in Afghanistan today are doing so in smaller units, from increasingly isolated locations. For these units on the "tactical edge", the burden of providing power and energy relies primarily on ground forces where the operational costs to deliver power and water are the greatest. At the tactical edge, sustainment operations are operations that consume combat power, and savings will likely be measured in lives rather than gallons of fuel saved."
ACORE and AEE are uniquely positioned to help DoD meet this challenge by drawing on the collective expertise and experience of their members, which include advanced energy industry associations, utilities, end users, professional service firms, financial institutions, educational institutions, nonprofit groups, and government agencies.
The first event of the forum series on January 26, 2012, "Collaboration on Technology, Procurement and Finance Solutions to Enhance National Defense," focused on renewable energy integration and increasing U.S. military and warfighter effectiveness. [See: "Powering America's Defense Today and Tomorrow" infographic; DoD Renewable Energy Primer; and Case Studies on Successful Renewable Energy Collaborations Between the Military and Industry: Lockheed Martin; Ocean Power Technologies; and SunPower]
The next forum will be held in conjunction with the Renewable Energy Technology Conference and Exhibition (RETECH), October 17-19.
A final report from the forum series will establish renewable energy requirements to meet DoD's forecasted mission; identify and forecast technology gaps that are not addressed by off-the-shelf energy technologies and applications; define next-generation financing structures that will help DoD accelerate renewable energy at installation and operational levels will minimizing budgetary impacts; and define model procurement methodologies to accelerate project development, enhance value and maximize results for DoD and the taxpayer.
ACORE, a 501(c)(3) non-profit membership organization, is dedicated to building a secure and prosperous America with clean, renewable energy. ACORE provides a common educational platform for a wide range of interests in the renewable energy community, focusing on technology, finance and policy. We convene thought leadership forums and create energy industry partnerships to communicate the economic, security and environmental benefits of renewable energy.
Founded in 2011 by Tom Steyer of Farallon Capital Management and Hemant Taneja of General Catalyst Partners, Advanced Energy Economy (AEE) is a business organization representing the advanced energy industry. AEE's mission is to influence public policy and provide a unified industry voice in support of a strong U.S. advanced energy industry as the economic engine of the global transition to a smarter energy future. Chapters and affiliates of AEE work at the state level to help local advanced energy member businesses connect, collaborate, grow and advocate for a better business climate for advanced energy companies.
AEE has offices in San Francisco, CA; Boston, MA; and Washington, DC. For more information about AEE, please go to www.AEE.net.