Installation Energy--The Future Challenge

  • Lieutenant Colonel Andrew Liffring

Energy security, defined as having assured access to reliable supplies of energy and the ability to protect and deliver sufficient energy to meet mission essential requirements, is a strategic issue for the United States. The U.S. Army is the DoD’s greatest energy user, consuming 36 percent of the DoD’s total in 2014, and therefore has a vested interest in increasing its energy security posture. However, the Army faces a critical energy security threat in the form of domestic utility disruptions due to the service’s dependence on commercial power grids, especially due to enemy action such as cyber-attack. However, the Army is only funded to meet current energy demands, receiving very little to invest in renewable energy projects. Currently, the Army must rely on third party financing and prioritize projects based on economic variables to increase energy security on Army installations. This strategy fails to increase readiness and allocate the Army’s limited means efficiently. By using the Energy Security framework proposed in this paper, the Army can better manage energy security projects in a risk-informed way.