Michigan’s Men & Women in Uniform Power Sustainability, Innovation

Perhaps it’s because the U.S. military is one of the biggest consumers of energy in the country. Or maybe it’s because energy dependence and global geopolitics must be a factor in many of our military operations. In either case, developing renewable sources of energy has a tremendous impact on our national security and America’s future—and Michigan is on track to become one of the nation’s leaders in this important aspect of our long-term energy independence.

When most people think of sustainability and innovation, they probably think of independent, “green” entrepreneurs diligently working on some game-changing invention in their garage or perhaps in a small-business incubator.

While these self-starters and visionaries definitely play a role in developing next-generation energy solutions, you may be surprised to learn who else is leading the way: members of our armed services.

Michigan’s Service Members Help Lead the Way

Here in Michigan, our military installations are making a huge difference in our energy future. A recent article highlights what three different units are doing to upgrade their energy infrastructure:

According to Robert Valkner of the U.S. Navy Reserve’s Navy Operations Support Center located on Fort Custer, “Using green energy sources is a win-win situation for everyone: the Navy has reduced operating costs and the taxpayers are billed less to fund us.”

The Bigger Picture

In a recent Detroit News guest editorial, former U.S. Army infantry officer Aaron Bailey of Royal Oak, Michigan, claims that, “A consensus of senior military leaders agrees that limited energy options pose a threat to our national security.” He highlights the military’s commitment to generating 20 percent of its electricity on installations from renewable sources by 2020.

This focus on an all-of-the-above energy strategy aligns with AMP’s belief that renewable energy is an important part of securing Michigan’s energy future. The military’s efforts demonstrate that we can move Michigan toward renewable energy in ways that are practical, cost-efficient, and sustainable over the long term.