• Published
  • By Mr. Daniel Thiel, portfolio optimization energy manager
  • 52nd Civil Engineer Squadron
' ... October was designated as Energy Action Month by the US Department of Energy for all federal agencies and will kick off U.S. Air Forces in Europe and Air Forces Africa Fiscal Year 2014 Energy Awareness Program... ' (from the foreword to the Energy Awareness Campaign Plan FY2014 from Lt. Gen. Noel T. Jones, Vice Commander, United States Air Forces in Europe).

We work every day to conserve letters in a text message to save time and effort. In the same line of thinking, we can work a little harder at conserving our "NRG" output.

October is the month we celebrate Columbus Day and enjoy a fun and scary Halloween night. However, for the Air Force, it is more than this. October is also Energy Awareness month. It's the time we should pause and think about how we deal with energy and how it impacts us in our daily routine and lives.

Once we flip a light switch, the light bulb turns on and brightens our rooms. We adjust the thermostat and enjoy feeling the room heating up or cooling down.

These are all things we take for granted, but for Spangdahlem Air Base, these actions lead to an electrical consumption of nearly 40-million kilowatt hours per year (costing about $7-million) and a fuel oil consumption of approximately 2-million gallons per year (costing about $6-million).

$13 MILLION... This is what Spangdahlem Air Base spends on energy in FY2014.

Energy is needed to keep Spangdahlem Air Base's mission running and to maintain our personal lives.  We cannot simply just cut the cables or pipes to reduce our energy bills, but that doesn't mean there's nothing we can do to lower our yearly energy consumption. There are plenty of ways we can save energy and anyone can do it, no matter what age. One of the keys is understanding where we use energy, where we can reduce its usage, and what it costs all of us.

In the month of October, we will help you to focus your thoughts on energy awareness. We will be providing several educational articles to help you understand how energy usage affects us all and ways we can personally reduce our consumption.  In addition, we will be recommending some energy saving initiatives that you can participate in to increase awareness. This can be a day where you decide to carpool to work, take advantage of a free private energy consumption survey of your home or join and support our students in an Energy Awareness poster contest. Find out what fits best for you and join the mission to reduce our energy consumption.

You got it in your hands to make the difference, because you are Air Force energy.