The White House yesterday recognized several Defense Department initiatives for advancing President Biden’s goals for building sustainability and climate resilience across the federal government.

The White House Council on Environmental Quality awarded the Presidential Federal Sustainability Award to Edwards Air Force Base in California and Tyndall Air Force Base in Florida for projects aimed at advancing carbon-free electricity and building climate adaptation and resilience. 

Three other initiatives carried out by the Army, Navy and Office of the Under Secretary of Defense for Acquisition received honorable mention for efforts to expand the fleet of electric vehicles within the federal government and advance the use of carbon-free energy.  

Launched in March 2023, the Presidential Federal Sustainability Awards are given to agency programs, projects, project teams, facilities and individuals for leadership and innovation in meeting President Biden’s climate action goals across the federal government. 

“Our Federal Government is the nation’s largest energy consumer, building and vehicle owner and purchaser of goods and services, and the Biden-Harris Administration remains committed to being good stewards of taxpayer dollars while delivering on the most ambitious climate and clean energy agenda in history,” said White House Council on Environmental Quality Chair Brenda Mallory.  

“The Presidential Federal Sustainability Award winners represent the very best of our federal workforce and agencies who have tackled complex challenges and delivered results for a cleaner, more efficient federal government,” she said. 

Tyndall Air Force Base was recognized efforts to rebuild a resilient and sustainable “installation of the future” following Hurricane Michael in 2018, which destroyed more than half of the facilities on base.  

Edwards Air Force base received the award for its new 2,662-acre solar facility hosting more than 700,000 solar panels which can produce nearly 460 megawatts of power to the California grid. 

The Department of the Navy received honorable mention for its zero-emission vehicle program which has led efforts to electrify the service’s fleet of non-tactical vehicle equipment. Those efforts include the development of the Navy’s project to introduce 1,661 electric vehicle charging stations which will enable an estimated 3,300 additional electric vehicles to operate on Navy bases.  

Army Fort Hunter Liggett was also recognized for its battery energy storage microgrid project which is expected to add 3.75 megawatts of photovoltaic electric generation to the 3MW already existing, a 5 megawatt-hour battery storage system, and 13 new smart electrical distribution switches upon completion this fall.  

Under Secretary of Defense for Acquisition and Sustainment William A. LaPlante also received honorable mention for a March 2023 memorandum directing DOD components to incorporate requirements into building design, construction, repair and operations that maximize the use of all-electric technologies to leverage the Department’s growing investment in microgrid technology to support mission assurance.

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