Annual Marine Corps Air Station Beaufort fair illuminates subject of energy conservation

21 Oct 2010 | Lance Cpl. Justin M. Boling

The 3rd annual Air Station Energy Fair was held at the Officers’ Club, Oct. 13.

The event featured demonstrations that displayed efforts made on the Air Station to increase energy productivity and decrease usage.

“The entire event was used to raise energy awareness and showcase what has been done and is being done,” said Neil Tisdale, the utilities director and energy usage manager for the Air Station.

The fair also featured Brite, the Navy and Marine Corps mascot for energy conservation.

Brite, a compact fluorescent light bulb, was developed by the members of Naval Facilities Engineering Command Northwest, Public Works Department in Kitsap, Wash.

Brite was not the only crowd pleaser. A lighting company presented new outdoor lighting designs like the Cimarron, a light-emitting diode technology designed for outdoor lighting and to replace iridescent lights in the near future.

“Changing older outdated lighting with newer, more energy efficient types is a quick fix for energy consumption,” said Debbie Bell, regional sales manager for Hubbell Lighting, Inc. “It has an immediate impact and involves very little effort or money since new energy saving lights fit the same fixtures as old ones and can reduce energy by nearly half.”

“The money used to supply buildings with new lighting and water fixtures can come directly from energy conservation funding,” said Tisdale. “This has led to better facilities as well as more energy and water conserved.”

Since the Energy Savings Performance Contract was instituted, the Air Station had to meet set energy and fuel conservation each year.

According to Tisdale, the goals are set and planned for projects to meet the goals set for 2015.

“Our job on the Air Station is to facilitate the performance contract, so that only the most high impact projects are selected to be implemented,” said Heather Sewell, the district marketing leader for Trane electric. “If the projects picked do not achieve projected goals we refund the money used to the Air Station.”

One of the most effective projects was switching fan-powered heating and cooling systems to ground-coupled heat pumps.

The Air Station also instituted an Energy Monitoring and Control System, a system which allows public works to examine the energy consumption of most buildings on the installation. Since the implementation of EMCS the Air Station has seen around an 18 percent consumption reduction.

“The EMCS system has allowed us to record spikes in usage and ensure that we can control lighting, heating and cooling systems remotely so we are never wasting power,” said Tisdale. “Just being able to turn off lights in the hangars when lights are no longer needed has made a huge difference.”

According to Tisdale, with rising utility costs and changing legal conservation standards the more energy saving projects that are done today, the better off the Air Station will be in the future.

The fair is a testimony to our efforts and planning to make the Air Station a more productive and energy efficient installation.