The Defense Department is honoring nine winners with the 2018 Secretary of Defense Environmental Awards for exceptional environmental achievements and innovative, cost-effective environmental practices.
The department has honored individuals, teams and installations each year since 1962 for remarkable achievements in these environmental management strategies that successfully support mission readiness, Ellen M. Lord, the undersecretary of defense for acquisition and sustainment, said in the memorandum announcing the recipients.
“The winners’ achievements reflect the department’s commitment to protect national security by supporting U.S. military forces through dynamic environmental stewardship that increases military readiness and enhances efficiencies,” Lord said.
By safeguarding the long-term sustainability of the nation’s vital resources, DoD is improving the military’s capabilities, according to Lord.
Each winner receives a trophy, a secretary of defense certificate of meritorious achievement, a personalized congratulatory letter, and an honorary American flag that is flown over the U.S. Capitol on Earth Day and over the Pentagon on Memorial Day.
The winners are:
Natural Resources Conservation, Small Installation: Hawaii Army National Guard, which implemented a multifaceted invasive species management program to increase acreage available for training and conserve a unique tropical ecosystem.
Natural Resources Conservation, Individual/Team: Natural Resources Conservation Team, Naval Base Ventura County, California, which established programs to support coastal resilience, conserve habitat and species and reduce costs at its three primary operating facilities.
Environmental Quality, Non-Industrial Installation: Fort Hood, Texas, which exceeded Qualified Recycling Program goals by selling 27.2 million pounds of recyclable materials and surpassed water and energy reduction goals by installing a solar photovoltaic array, wind turbines and water conservation systems.
Environmental Quality, Individual/Team: Frederick A. Javier, 1st Special Operations Civil Engineer Squadron, Hurlburt Field, Florida, who provided outstanding leadership by training installation staff on environmental management and engaging with the local community to promote DoD’s mission and science education.
Sustainability, Industrial Installation: Marine Corps Logistics Base Barstow, California, which achieved reductions in electricity and water consumption while partnering with local government to gain cost savings.
Environmental Restoration, Installation: Vandenberg Air Force Base, California, which completed a 10-year performance-based restoration initiative resulting in response complete or site closure for 44 environmental restoration sites ahead of schedule, and maintained accelerated or on-time closure for 55 additional sites.
Environmental Restoration, Individual/Team: Vieques Environmental Restoration Team, Puerto Rico, which implemented successful restoration projects to remove unexploded ordinance and clean up contaminants while engaging with local partners.
Cultural Resources Management, Large Installation: Camp Ripley, Minnesota Army National Guard, which completed an installation-wide record of all archaeological sites that will benefit cultural resources management and reduce impact to critical military operations.
Environmental Excellence in Weapon System Acquisition, Large Program: Combat Rescue Helicopter Program Environment, Safety and Occupational Health Team, Wright-Patterson Air Force Base, Ohio, which implemented programs to eliminate or reduce exposure to hazardous materials like hexavalent chromium.
(Follow Lisa Ferdinando on Twitter: @FerdinandoDoD)