Wing recognized, rewarded for energy efficiency

GOWEN FIELD, Boise, Idaho -- Idaho Power officials visited the civil engineer squadron here Dec. 29 to present an incentive check for more than $20,000 to recognize the Idaho Air Guard for its commitment to energy efficiency.

As part of Idaho Power's Easy Upgrades program, civil engineer personnel have replaced and upgraded lighting in many wing buildings, including supply, the consolidated install facilities on the east campus, A-10 operations and others.
Idaho Power experts project an annual cost savings as a result of these upgrades of roughly $6,300. Perhaps even more importantly, the resulting energy savings is enough to power 10 averaged-sized homes in Idaho for a full year.

According to Idaho Power, the check represents a down payment toward the savings in future monthly electric bills, and a sizeable "Thank You" for the wing's energy-saving effort.

Tech. Sgt. Travis Jones and Scott Busmann from the 124th Civil Engineer Squadron spearheaded the effort and accepted the incentive check on behalf of the wing. Sergeant Jones did much of the leg work to upgrade lighting in seven facilities to more energy efficient fixtures.

According to Mr. Busmann, facility manager for the CES, this is the largest of three projects CE has done in the last two years to install energy efficient lighting that resulted in incentive credit from Idaho Power.

"We have been striving to meet our goal of reducing energy consumption by three percent annually directed by Executive Order 13423 for the years from 2007 until 2015," he said.

Last year, CES participated in an energy audit funded by the National Guard Bureau. Once the results are release, Busmann said civil engineers will have additional projects to submit to NGB in the hopes of directing some of the $62 million allocated in the 2010 budget for energy projects to Gowen Field. Meanwhile, CES will continue lighting and HVAC upgrades for energy efficiency.

Busmann said he, Jones and others involved in this recognition share the credit for this incentive rebate -- and the responsibility of sound environmental stewardship - with every member of the 124th Fighter Wing.

"Ultimately, energy conservation responsibility falls on every airman. Simple things like shutting off lights and not using electric heaters can create the biggest energy savings," Busmann said.

And the savings can be significant. Monthly energy bills for Air Guard facilities on Gowen Field average $30,000 for electricity, $18,000 for natural gas, and nearly $6,000 for water.