Navy, California sign MOU on renewable energy

The California Energy Commission and the Department of the Navy signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) Oct. 12 that will help the state and the Navy and Marine Corps continue to operate on the cutting edge of technology by pursuing innovative renewable energy initiatives.

Energy Commission Chair Robert B. Weisenmiller and Assistant Secretary of the Navy for Energy, Installations and Environment Dennis V. McGinn signed the agreement formalizing a partnership that supports Navy and Marine Corps installation efforts to develop alternative energy resources and increase energy security and reliability. The MOU ensures continued collaboration and information sharing on energy projects and initiatives.

“California and the Navy are taking action to boost energy efficiency and curb our dependence on fossil fuels,” said California Governor Edmund G. Brown Jr. “This agreement will help expand renewable energy at military bases and secure water supplies in the face of drought.”

The MOU helps implement some of the key recommendations made by the Governor’s Military Council last year. The recommendations aim to enhance the state’s defense and national security mission and its benefits to California’s economy and communities.

Recent joint projects between the Department of the Navy and the Energy Commission include a demonstration of a waterless cleaning process for Kevlar vests, flame resistant garments and other ballistic gear at Naval Base Ventura County, Port Hueneme and the installation of a solar microgrid system with battery storage to ensure mission readiness should the commercial power grid fail at Marine Corps Air Station Miramar.

The Department of the Navy is transforming its energy use by developing energy efficiency measures and alternative energy resources to increase mission capability and flexibility. In 2009, Secretary of the Navy Ray Mabus set aggressive renewable energy goals to spur the development of alternative power and energy efficient technology and operational procedures. Recognizing the benefits of alternative energy, Secretary Mabus stood up the Renewable Energy Program Office (REPO) in order to accelerate his goals and bring one gigawatt of renewable energy into procurement by the end of 2015 – which REPO completed in just 18 months.