Water, Energy, and the U.S. Department of DefenseJuly 21, 2011 By Jimmy BrousseauEnergy for the War Fighter is the U.S. Department of Defense’s first operational energy strategy, mandated by congress last year. Energy security for the department means having assured access to reliable supplies of energy and the ability to protect and deliver energy to meet operational (non-facilities-related) needs. The report is divided into three main parts, which address reducing current demand for energy in military operations; expanding and securing the supply of energy for military operations; and building consideration of energy security into future force decisions. The strategy is designed to both support current military operations and to focus future energy investments accordingly. Previous federal energy mandates exempted the military’s field operations, which account for three-quarters of the department’s energy consumption. The department as a whole makes up 80 percent of the federal government’s annual energy use.
The Water Energy Nexus: Adding Water to the Energy Agenda, by Diana Glassman, Michele Wucker, Tanushree Isaacman, and Corinne Champilouis of the World Policy Institute, attempts to show the correlation between energy and water to motivate policy makers to consider the implications of their dual consumption. “Nations around the world are evaluating their energy options and developing policies that apply appropriate financial carrots and sticks to various technologies to encourage sustainable energy production, including cost, carbon, and security considerations,” write the authors. “Water needs to be a part of this debate, particularly how communities will manage the trade-offs between water and energy at the local, national, and cross-border levels.” The study provides the context needed to evaluate key tradeoffs between water and energy by providing “the most credible available data about water consumption per unit of energy produced across a wide spectrum of traditional energy technologies,” they write.
Sources: U.S. Department of Defense.
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