Department of the Air Force winners of Federal Energy and Water Management Awards

  • Published
  • By Secretary of the Air Force Public Affairs

The Department of Energy’s Federal Energy Management Program recognized three Department of the Air Force teams and individuals with 2023 Federal Energy and Water Management Awards for their significant contributions to energy and water efficiency within the federal government.

“I publicly commend the winners of this year’s FEMP Awards for their dedication to creating resilient, sustainable and efficient energy solutions for our installations,” said Nancy Balkus, Deputy Assistant Secretary for Environment, Safety, and Infrastructure. “We are in the midst of a generational change at the Department of the Air Force, and these awards showcase the professionals leading the way to develop innovative projects and solutions propelling our service forward to deter, compete and win in an era of Great Power Competition.”  

Wright-Patterson Air Force Base’s Civil Engineer Energy Management Section won in the Program Category for their commitment to energy efficiency, sustainability, and resilience. In fiscal year 2022, the Energy Management Section oversaw the execution of a new $14 million high temperature hot water decentralization project, completed a $24 million decentralization project, and conducted planning for a series of new energy projects totaling approximately $100 million in future investments. The energy team also successfully conducted the base’s first Energy Resilience Readiness Exercise and established a forum to address findings from the Department of Defense’s first Cyber Resilience Readiness Exercise.

Kadena Air Base is being recognized in the Project Category for their impressive execution of an $86 million Energy Savings Performance Contract project, which reduced energy dependence and provided a dramatic reduction in water usage – a critical resource for the installation. The project represents one of the department’s largest water conservation initiatives, reducing consumption by almost 60 million gallons of water and providing for $785,068 in savings in fiscal year 2022 alone. The project is also the first Energy Savings Performance Contract example of a standby microgrid, which is composed of five generators and has a total capacity of 10 megawatts.

Lastly, Joseph Buch received an award for the Career Exceptional Service Category in recognition of more than 38 years in federal service. At the Headquarters Air National Guard Civil Engineering Technical Service Center, Mr. Buch serves as the subject matter expert for mechanical engineering matters and as the lead project manager for sustainment, restoration, and modernization, military construction, and energy resilience and conservation investment program projects. During his tenure, Buch ensured the execution of $22.5 million in energy-related projects, which have contributed to the Air National Guard’s cumulative reduction in energy use intensity of over 26.7% and water use intensity of over 44.4%.

These Department of the Air Force winners are successfully reducing energy and water waste, while advancing America’s progress toward energy independence, resilience, and security. Their efforts highlight critical components in our continued fight for installation resilience in a time of Great Power Competition and rising operational threats.

Full descriptions of each award can be read here.