Free Republic
Browse · Search
News/Activism
Topics · Post Article

Skip to comments.

Groundbreaking celebrates saving with sunshine. Military's largest solar array being built on fort
Sierra Vista Herald ^ | Bill Hess

Posted on 04/26/2014 7:49:22 AM PDT by SandRat

FORT HUACHUCA — A groundbreaking ceremony for a $40 million, 65,000 solar panel array, which will be the largest at any Department of Defense military installation, took place on this southern Arizona Army post Friday morning.

Assistant Secretary of the Army, Katherine Hammack, said it is appropriate the event took place during the week of Earth Day, in effect making Friday a green letter day because of the fort’s special Renewable Energy Project.

For Maj. Gen. Robert Ashley the electric-generating project is more than a way to save the Army money — the estimated annual electric bill for the fort is $10 million — but will eliminate 58,0000 tons of carbon being spewed into the air, as well of reduce water use by Tucson Electric Power by two million gallons a year.

Additionally, the solar array adds “to the resiliency of the post,” allowing for more missions in the future, said Ashley, the commander of the Army Intelligence Center of Excellence and Fort Huachuca.

Hammack said the Army has been involved in seeking projects like the one which will operate on the post, keeping its pledge to reduce energy costs.

Her functions as an assistant Army secretary is monitoring installations, energy and environmental issues.

By decreasing energy costs, money can be used for other critical Army needs, which in effect will provide two positives — protecting the environment and the nation, she said.

She and Ashley were two of seven speakers before symbolic shovel loads of dirt were turned on a field which Hammack noted has had a number of uses during the fort’s 139-year history. During World War II the site was an obstacle course for two divisions of black soldiers preparing for combat.

The Army is providing an easement of 68 acres to Tucson Electric Power, which has been serving the post for more than 70 years.

Hammack said the ability to allow a private company to use government land means there is no need to purchase or lease property, which is a major cost savings.

But, it’s not a government giveaway, because the Army receives a lot in savings, she said.

David Hutchens agrees, saying TEP considers the fort one of its best customers. He is the president of UniSource Energy Corporation and TEP, which has a number of solar arrays elsewhere, mainly in the Tucson area.

TEP is working with E.ON Climate & Renewables, North American, on the fort project, Hutchens said.

The electric company is paying the entire $40 million project cost and will have a 30-year easement on the fort. E.ON is a German-based international energy company.

The project site where which the first phase of 58,000, 4-foot by 6-foot panels, will be installed is not far from the fort’s Main Gate and near the Thunder Mountain Activity Centre, where the ceremony took place.

The switch to solar-generated electricity is expected to take place by the end of the year Hutchens said, adding the second phase will add 7,000 more panels.

Hammack noted for a government project, putting it together from concept to groundbreaking was rapid.

Ruth Cox, regional administrator for the General Services Administration noted that this is “GSA’s first solar project.”

It was last summer when GSA was approached “and today we are taking a significant step forward,” Cox said.

And now that GSA has become involved she said, “we will be collaborating with others.”

Waiting to begin the work was Steven Trenholm, president of E.ON in North America, who said the Army’s vision of renewable energy is very appealing.

Also at the event was Amanda Simpson, the executive director of the Army’s Energy Initiatives Task Force, who noted “Fort Huachuca is extremely special.”

The project on the post will provide, but not store, electricity, and will have enough to meet the fort’s daylight peak demand, which is 23 megawatts.

At night, or when the array is not producing enough power, the fort will tap into TEP’s regular lines.

U.S. Rep. Ron Barber, whose congressional district includes the fort and Davis-Monthan Air Force Base in Tucson, said the desire to utilize Arizona’s sun-generating power, began with his predecessor, congresswoman Gabby Giffords.

Barber said he will now have bragging rights in Congress because the two largest defense solar arrays are in his district. Currently the largest array is at the Tucson air base, but when the fort’s comes on line, it will be number one in size.

Since Arizona has sunlight 330 days a year it is only natural the state should become the leader in solar energy, Barber said, as investing in the technology is not only logical but smart in saving federal dollars.

Also, he said how the Army is leading when it comes to renewable energy and how, in the case of the fort, working with other government agencies and civilian businesses is something which should be emulated.

“In Congress we don’t do that,” meaning work together, he said during a press conference in the Thunder Mountain Activity Centre.

Hammack also pick up on Ashley’s resiliency comment he made earlier saying the energy project will benefit “missions into the future.”

The general said, there is no doubt, the post will garner more attention “by a project like this.”


TOPICS: Foreign Affairs; US: Arizona
KEYWORDS: fthuahcuca; solor
Photos at source URL
1 posted on 04/26/2014 7:49:22 AM PDT by SandRat
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | View Replies]

To: SandRat

So is this a Reid project or McCain?


2 posted on 04/26/2014 7:50:41 AM PDT by mountainlion (Live well for those that did not make it back.)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: SandRat

Better there than Bemidji, Minnesota.


3 posted on 04/26/2014 7:52:10 AM PDT by Paladin2
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: mountainlion
mmmmmm..... could be, but it is a Greenie invasion under Obama for sure.
4 posted on 04/26/2014 7:54:48 AM PDT by SandRat (Duty - Honor - Country! What else needs said?)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 2 | View Replies]

To: SandRat

When I see them p!ssing away money like this I sometimes wonder WTH I’m not bellying up to the bar myself.


5 posted on 04/26/2014 7:58:05 AM PDT by rockrr (Everything is different now...)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: SandRat

This solar project along with Muslim outreach programs are much better than training to kill and break things. (Is that little sarcasm tag really needed?)


6 posted on 04/26/2014 7:58:09 AM PDT by ConservativeInPA (We need to fundamentally transform RATs lives for their lies.)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: SandRat
mmmmmm..... could be, but it is a Greenie invasion under Obama for sure.

Harry Reid was big in getting his son into Chinese solar expansion in Nevada so I expect he jumped the border. Soon they will be forcing solar up Mexico's.

7 posted on 04/26/2014 8:00:02 AM PDT by mountainlion (Live well for those that did not make it back.)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 4 | View Replies]

To: ConservativeInPA
The difference between a Civil Engineer and an Aerospace Engineer is the Civil Engineer builds buildings & roads, the Aerospace Engineer builds missiles to blow builds buildings & roads up.
8 posted on 04/26/2014 8:04:23 AM PDT by SandRat (Duty - Honor - Country! What else needs said?)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 6 | View Replies]

To: rockrr
Because it is someone else’s money that they are spending and ROI isn't important.
9 posted on 04/26/2014 8:14:25 AM PDT by dhs12345
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 5 | View Replies]

To: SandRat

Not every Aerospace Eng designs missiles.


10 posted on 04/26/2014 8:16:31 AM PDT by dhs12345
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 8 | View Replies]

To: SandRat

“...more than a way to save the Army money....”

Bet they don’t.


11 posted on 04/26/2014 8:22:21 AM PDT by lacrew (Mr. Soetoro, we regret to inform you that your race card is over the credit limit.)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: dhs12345
The difference between a Civil Engineer and an Aerospace Engineer is the Civil Engineer builds buildings & roads, the Aerospace Engineer builds missiles to blow builds buildings & roads up.

and

Not every Aerospace Eng designs missiles.


Correct, but in this case Raytheon does build missiles just 40 miles away from this solar site....:^)

12 posted on 04/26/2014 8:34:49 AM PDT by az_gila
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 10 | View Replies]

To: az_gila

Ya. :)


13 posted on 04/26/2014 8:55:11 AM PDT by dhs12345
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 12 | View Replies]

To: mountainlion

Cost of each panel averages over $615.


14 posted on 04/26/2014 9:25:37 AM PDT by ridesthemiles
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 2 | View Replies]

To: dhs12345

My Son MissleMan does.


15 posted on 04/26/2014 1:12:19 PM PDT by SandRat (Duty - Honor - Country! What else needs said?)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 10 | View Replies]

To: SandRat

But, but what about its effect on the beaded Gila Monster?


16 posted on 04/26/2014 1:17:40 PM PDT by Nachoman (Wisdom is learned, cynicism is earned.)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: Nachoman

Good question.


17 posted on 04/26/2014 1:34:17 PM PDT by SandRat (Duty - Honor - Country! What else needs said?)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 16 | View Replies]

To: ridesthemiles
Cost of each panel averages over $615.

And the constant year round maintenance courtesy of the Maintenance Fairy?

18 posted on 04/26/2014 8:37:59 PM PDT by publius911 ( At least Nixon had the good g race to resign!)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 14 | View Replies]

To: ridesthemiles

Question! Are/were these solar panels fabricated in China? I tend towards believing there is a link between all this land grabbing and financial debt the USA owes to China, most of which I think is the result of wheeling-dealing of the Clinton’s and Obama and his enablers. The stench of all this goes all the way down to state levels but our elected reps haven’t the nose for it.


19 posted on 04/26/2014 9:21:58 PM PDT by noinfringers2
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 14 | View Replies]

To: dhs12345

Having spent many years as a civilian engineer and just as many as an aerospace engineer working with other engineers my take is that there is a double speak as to being an aerospace engineer.


20 posted on 04/26/2014 9:28:31 PM PDT by noinfringers2
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 10 | View Replies]

To: noinfringers2

I guess that I am missing the joke.

They are two completely different fields.

And many design space systems. And many might work on project that are tied to destruction in some way.


21 posted on 04/27/2014 6:59:31 AM PDT by dhs12345
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 20 | View Replies]

To: dhs12345

I don’t get the gist of your response to my comment. However, to put my thoughts in a different light I will say it was my personal experience that there were different engineering disciplines involved in the aerospace industry world. I would even stretch that world to include some of the sharpest industrial tool and die personnel who had manufacturing insights beyond the books.


22 posted on 04/27/2014 11:13:48 AM PDT by noinfringers2
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 21 | View Replies]

To: noinfringers2
I was responding to the originally post.

Civil engs create things, aerospace engs design missiles that destroy what the civil eng creates.

My point was that not all aerospace engs design missiles.

23 posted on 04/27/2014 12:59:45 PM PDT by dhs12345
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 22 | View Replies]

To: SandRat

Just saying.

I put gas in my car yesterday:

$4.15 a gallon, for regular.


24 posted on 04/27/2014 1:02:08 PM PDT by Cringing Negativism Network (http://www.census.gov/foreign-trade/balance/c5700.html#2013)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: All


Help FR Continue the Conservative Fight!
Your Monthly and Quarterly Donations
Help Keep FR In the Battle!

Sponsoring FReepers are contributing
$10 Each time a New Monthly Donor signs up!
Get more bang for your FR buck!
Click Here To Sign Up Now!


25 posted on 04/27/2014 1:06:35 PM PDT by musicman (Until I see the REAL Long Form Vault BC, he's just "PRES__ENT" Obama = Without "ID")
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 24 | View Replies]

To: noinfringers2

It is worse than that:

The Chicoms do not sell their own land.

Nor do Chicoms allow foreigners (that’s us, by the way) to own companies outright.

We cannot buy into China, except as minority interests. As China gains in power, this becomes significantly more important.

America needs to bring back businesses to America.


26 posted on 04/27/2014 1:54:58 PM PDT by Cringing Negativism Network (http://www.census.gov/foreign-trade/balance/c5700.html#2013)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 19 | View Replies]

Disclaimer: Opinions posted on Free Republic are those of the individual posters and do not necessarily represent the opinion of Free Republic or its management. All materials posted herein are protected by copyright law and the exemption for fair use of copyrighted works.

Free Republic
Browse · Search
News/Activism
Topics · Post Article

FreeRepublic, LLC, PO BOX 9771, FRESNO, CA 93794
FreeRepublic.com is powered by software copyright 2000-2008 John Robinson