Last week, the US Army unveiled its plan to make its operations environment friendly through its climate strategy. One of the main aims mentioned in the strategy is to reduce the emissions of greenhouse gas.
The US Army is the oldest branch of the military, and it has bases in some 70 countries. According to the Conversation, the military burns more resources than over 140 countries, making the enterprise one of the world’s biggest pollutants. Last year, a petroleum leak from fuel used by military vehicles resulted in a health crisis after it poisoned water that is relied on by the residents of Hawaii as well as military families.
In the past, President Joseph Biden has called for agencies to adapt to climate change urging them to be ready for the risks stemming from climate change. With climate change affecting supply chains and damaging infrastructure, the strategy aims to expand response missions to catastrophes and address the dangers of climate change to communities.
Secretary of the Army Christine Wormuth states that the issue of climate change should be addressed immediately. She urged that the Army should intentionally pursue strategies that reduce climate risks.
The strategy features a roadmap of actions that will lead to the installation of a microgrid in all of its stations and adoption of electric vehicles (“EVs”) in their fleet by 2035. It also looks to slash emissions from buildings and consider ways to minimize threats from climate change into its land management decisions. The strategy targets to halve its 2005 emission levels by 2030 and achieve net-zero levels by 2050.
So far, 950 renewable energy projects have begun or have been completed. This includes a 2.1 Mw solar field at Fort Knox, Kentucky.
Last year, the Department of Defense stated that climate hazards posed a potential danger to military operations, stating that the situation will lead to new sources of overseas political conflict. As a result of rising extreme weather, tensions associated with water shortages could be one of the main problems to be expected.
The effects of climate change have cost the department billions of dollars and have led to an increased demand for troops while also damaging military bases, putting service members at risk and degrading mission capabilities.
The Army secretary states that soldiers are operating in extreme temperature environments with some instances involving fighting wildfires and supporting hurricane recovery efforts. The strategy will implement leader development and workforce training in the Army. The strategy will start to offer best practices by 2024 and offer climate-change topics by 2028.
Paul Farnan, an acting assistant secretary in the Army, states that the strategy is not only important in addressing the effects of climate change but also showing the Army’s influence in minimizing its carbon emissions and reducing those climate change effects.
When federal agencies such as the Army begin planning to switch to electric vehicles, manufacturers such as Nikola Corporation (NASDAQ: NKLA) can look forward to a bright future since the general population is likely to be nudged to adopt EVs faster when government agencies are setting the example.
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