DoD Leader Notes Department's Environmental Record
National Guard Bureau
WASHINGTON, April 21, 2004 The Department of Defense is a good steward of America's environmental heritage, a top DoD official said.
April 22 is Earth Day, and the department has had a stellar record on the environment, said Ray DuBois, deputy undersecretary of defense for installations and environment.
"There are awards that have been made to posts, camps and stations all over the country," Dubois said recently. DoD manages the health of about 300 endangered species that on the "very bio-diverse 30 million acres which we manage in the United States."
The Air Force and Army have been recognized for their work, for example, in saving the red-cockaded woodpecker in the Southeast. The Navy and Marine Corps have worked to ensure the survival of the fairy shrimp in the West Coast, DuBois said.
The department dedicates nearly $4 billion a year on environmental programs. "Clearly this obligation is taken seriously by this department," he said.
All of the services will celebrate Earth Day. For example, the Navy Department will mark Earth Day under the theme of "Celebrating Successful Partnerships." This recognizes the Navy's work with many partners around the world. "Earth Day presents an excellent opportunity to highlight the department's continued contributions to ensuring a sustainable environmental future," said Navy Secretary Gordon R. England. "Earth Day 2004 is an occasion for the Navy and Marine Corps to work with partnering organizations to re-emphasize our commitment to the environment in which we work and live, both in the U.S. and overseas."
The service gave a few highlights of its environmental accomplishments in 2003, including:
A joint venture between Norfolk Naval Shipyard and Atlantic Wood Industries to remove 38,000 tons of calcium hydroxide, 3,900 tons of wood debris, 1,400 tons of abrasive blast media and 1,700 tons of contaminated soil from two adjacent National Priority List sites in the Chesapeake Bay Watershed.
Partnerships between the Norfolk Naval Shipyard and the Virginia Institute of Marine Science and the Elizabeth River Project to construct a 1.33-acre wetland and plant a 1.6-acre riparian buffer to provide upland a habitat that consists of native grasses, bushes and trees that provide additional storm and water filtration control.
The implementation of a Navywide "At Sea" Policy that requires all fleet exercises to be reviewed for environmental compliance and for potential effect on marine mammals and other marine life.
The Marine Corps Base, Camp Pendleton, Calif., has one of the largest alternative fuel vehicle fleets in the nation and is broadly recognized as a leader in the field.
The Naval Air Weapons Station at China Lake, Calif., is operating a 270- megawatt geothermal power plant that provides nearly pollution-free power for 180,000 homes. Since its inception, the Navy has reduced greenhouse gas emissions by 4.5 metric tons at China Lake.
All the gas-powered vehicles in the executive motor pool at Naval Station Anacostia here were replaced with alternatively fueled vehicles.
The Navy also has been recognized for its leadership in energy conservation and its environmental stewardship. Recently, President Bush cited the Naval Facilities Engineering Command with a Presidential Award for Leadership in Federal Energy Management in the category of "Outstanding Performance." The award was one of five Presidential Awards presented in 2003.
Each year, the Navy commands sponsor booth displays, tree plantings, volunteer cleanup projects, environmental fairs, and other Earth Day-related events.