NEWS: U.S. Army Goes a Little Greener by Calculating its Carbon "Bootprint"

Dispatch from SSC Intern Paul Turaew

Clearly, businesses of from every industry contribute harmful GHG emissions. Now, the federal government is taking a hard look at the impact the U.S. Army has on climate change. It recently contracted a company to study 12 bases across the country and calculate their carbon “bootprints.” The Wall Street Journal reports: 

Enviance, the company contracted to measure emission levels and make the recommendations, has already piloted a project at Fort Carson, Colo., home of 23,000 military personnel. According to the firm, Fort Carson emits about 200,000 to 220,000 tons of greenhouse-gas emissions a year. Multiply that carbon bootprint by nearly a dozen bases, and those bases have the greenhouse-gas profile equivalent to that of a small coal-fired power plant.

This is a positive step for a couple of reasons. One, it is due time our government recognized that private industry and utilities are not the only contributors of harmful GHGs. Although our military operates with special and urgent needs that should not be compromised, much of its GHG-producing operations take place off the battlefield. This sort of inward reflection by our government encourages the private sector in following suit.

Two, the audit will quantify the army’s vast carbon emission. This, in-turn will create tremendous business opportunities for companies functioning to promote cleaner energy and more sustainable practices. This is good for our economy.

Although this will no doubt cost the American taxpayer more money, by recognizing our carbon footprint and working to decrease it – we lessen our dependence on foreign oil. Over time, this will help increase our national security and perhaps even prevent a future war. A trade-off, I believe, the military and all civilians would gladly welcome.

Read the entire article here.