Marine Corps Base Camp Pendleton Shares the Keys to Their Successful Energy Program

August 31, 2005

Marine Corps Base (MCB) Camp Pendleton has surpassed the federal government's mandated energy reduction goal of 35 percent for 2010 six years early, achieving a noteworthy 44 percent reduction in energy intensity from the FY 1985 baseline. One of the primary reasons for their successful energy program has been strong support throughout the chain of command, in particular, the strategic vision of Colonel Russell Eve, Assistant Chief of Staff Facilities; Edmund Rogers, Base Facilities Manager; Lieutenant Colonel Gregory Thomas, Facilities Maintenance Officer; and Jay Bergamini, Deputy Facilities Maintenance Officer.

Camp Pendleton holds an advantage over many other installations—that is, senior management continues to employ a full-time, dedicated federal energy manager. At other installations, the energy manager position is a collateral duty along with other responsibilities, so attention may often be diverted from energy issues to the "fire drill" of the day. For MCB Camp Pendleton, full-time energy manager Jeff Allen is instrumental to their day-to-day operations and the resulting achievements of significant energy reductions and cost savings.

Another key management decision was to augment the energy manager's position with a contracted full-time Resource Efficiency Manager (REM), Randy Monohan. The REM provides the energy manager the latitude of calling upon the expanded resources of a consulting firm in order to leverage technical resources and capabilities and benefit from lessons learned at other installations. This collaboration has led to a true winning team effort.

Camp Pendleton also continues to use alternative financing approaches to fund capital-intensive energy efficiency projects. Plans are underway to award a $12 million utility energy services contract (UESC) in FY 2005 through the local utility provider. In FY 2004, Camp Pendleton executed UESC projects valued at $6.5 million. In FY 2003, they executed a UESC contract for $11.7 million as well a $5.7 million energy savings performance contract (ESPC) with a third party contractor. In FY 2002, the Base executed a UESC contract valued at $5.9 million. These UESC and ESPC contracts focus on a variety of energy projects, including:

  • Natural gas reduction: retrofitted more than 120 boilers and de-commissioned a large steam plant

  • Electrical load reduction: retrofitted more than 700 traffic signal lights, 1,500 parking lot lights, 2,600 high intensity discharge lights, and 25,000 incandescent to compact fluorescent lamps; decommissioned 20,000 older fluorescent light fixtures and installed more than 1,200 skylights for natural daylighting.

  • Renewable Energy: installed more than 200 solar-powered street lights and caution lights—an effort that led to the installation of solar-powered lighting at bus stops, carport electric vehicle charging stations, wastewater overflow detection stations, and notification and communication systems. Camp Pendleton also has several rooftop photovoltaic systems in the final design stages. Due to the success of and overwhelming demand for solar-powered streetlights, the Base is now installing 100 new streetlights at remote, off-grid locations. Given the high visibility of the solar-powered projects to the thousands of civilians and Marines that work and live at Camp Pendleton, these projects provide a great educational opportunity on the many applications of solar power.

  • Advanced drive-by metering systems: This project will install and/or upgrade all master electric, gas, and water meters under the same platform and will allow information to readily be provided to Base personnel and end users for action. The next phase will install remaining electric and gas sub-meters in an effort to cover approximately 85 percent of the buildings on the Base with advanced meters with capabilities for drive-by data collection.

Through these projects and educational efforts, under the direction of a dedicated energy team, MCB Camp Pendleton was able to significantly reduce energy consumption in just a few years, even though the installation's facility space increased by 2 million square feet. Looking forward, MCB Camp Pendleton's strategic vision is to capitalize on project development and execution in combination with Base-wide energy education and awareness in order to further reduce energy consumption and costs.

For more information, please contact Jeff Allen, Base Energy Manager, or Randy Monohan, Resource Efficiency Manager, or call 760-725-0566, DSN 365-0566.