By Lee H. Saunders, Naval Facilities Engineering Command Southwest Public Affairs
SAN DIEGO (NNS) -- The American Academy of Environmental Engineers & Scientists (AAEES) announced March 27 that Navy Region Southwest (NRSW) is an honor award winner of the Academy's 2014 National Excellence in Environmental Engineering & Science competition for environmental sustainability.
Naval Facilities Engineering Command (NAVFAC) Southwest manages the environmental sustainability program for NRSW. The program is responsible for waste reduction and recycling, electrical energy and water conservation, renewable energy generation, and greenhouse gas emissions reduction. NAVFAC functions as the facilities engineer for NRSW to design, construct and operate capital improvements, real property assets, public works, and environmental projects and services that include the environmental sustainability components.
"Sustainability has a tremendous pay back for Navy Region Southwest, for our business partners and for the local communities in which we operate," said Stephen Worthington, NAVFAC Southwest Sustainability program manager for NRSW. "I truly enjoy reporting the savings in electrical energy and water use as well as from our power purchase agreements for our renewable energy projects. As a taxpayer, I am also pleased to see the associated reduction in cost to support our warfighters and our country."
The environmental sustainability program supports 10 NRSW installations with a plant replacement value of approximately $32 billion with nearly 12,000 buildings and structures, fleet ships and aircraft, associated ranges, personnel housing, and other activities in California, Nevada, Arizona, Colorado, Utah, and New Mexico. The sustainability program reduces greenhouse gas emissions, generates materials and markets for recycled products, and creates jobs to construct, operate, and maintain the associated systems and facilities.
Innovative waste reduction and recycling efforts have contributed substantially to protection and sustainability of air, water, land, and energy resources of the region including diversion and recycling of municipal solid waste and construction and demolition wastes, reuse of office products, in-port ship waste recycling, rail cars recycling, green purchasing, and Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) construction that have achieved approximately 75 percent diversion from landfill disposal and surpassing a Department of Defense goal of 50 percent diversion by 2015.
"I love telling people about our strong return on investment in waste diversion and recycling through savings in landfill disposal costs, revenue from recycled materials, cost avoidance of new furniture purchases, and creation of jobs in the recycling industry as both a supplier and consumer of recycled materials and products," said Leslie McLaughlin, NAVFAC Southwest Sustainable Solid Waste program manager for NRSW.
AAEES, located in Annapolis, Md., is a specialty certification board and professional society dedicated to improving the quality of environmental engineering and science practice.
NRSW will accept its award during the AAEES's annual awards luncheon and conference on April 24 at the National Press Club in Washington, D.C.