The Energy Office at Hill Air Force Base in Utah recently received the 2019 Federal Energy and Water Management Award from the US Department of Energy. The annual award recognizes outstanding contributions in the areas of energy efficiency, water conservation and the use of renewable energy technologies at federal facilities.
U.S. Air Force photo by Todd Cromar
Nick King, base energy and utility manager, said the award is a validation of the installation’s efforts underway with a $91.1 million, 23-year-term Energy Savings Performance Contract awarded in April 2018 to Energy Solutions Group.
ESPCs allow federal agencies, such as the Air Force, to partner with energy service companies to provide energy savings, resiliency and facility improvements with no up-front capital costs to the government or special Congressional appropriations.
“There are Department of Defense directives that guide us to reduce our energy consumption, so this will go a long way to us actually meeting those requirements,” King said.
In addition to the cost benefits, the energy conservation projects in progress at Hill AFB are contributing to the Air Force’s goal to make installations more energy resilient by relying less on energy sources outside the fence line in order to sustain its missions.
The ESPC at Hill AFB is being used to fund a comprehensive project throughout the base with an allocation of $42 million in infrastructure upgrades to 328 buildings across more than nine million square feet.
Some energy conservation improvements have included new LED lighting systems in 166 buildings, as well as upgrades to the steam distribution systems in 162 buildings, compressed air systems and ventilation and control systems across the base.
A new 3.55-MW solar array was also completed in June that feeds directly into the base’s electric grid, adding to the base’s existing renewable energy production capability.
In total, the project improvements are expected to reduce annual energy consumption at Hill AFB by 9 percent and energy costs by 13 percent, while increasing the installation’s distributed and renewable energy portfolio by 30 percent.
A minimum savings of $3.2 million annually is expected and will be used to pay for the project’s total cost during the term of the contract.
According to King, several individuals and organizations played a role in being selected for the award, including Brian Walsh, energy engineer, Karen Bastian, outreach coordinator, and Keith Carvalho, contracting. In addition, he touted the close working relationship with the Ogden Air Logistics Complex, specifically Aaron Erickson, Ogden ALC energy manager, and Garth Beutler, facilities engineer.