LUKE AIR FORCE BASE, Ariz. --
In the month of national energy awareness, the Peak Solutions program ran by the Arizona Public Service (APS), Arizona’s largest electric utility, presented the 56th Civil Engineer Squadron Portfolio Optimization office with a reward of more than $13,500, Oct. 15, 2019, for their accomplishments in saving energy.
“Luke has always been a tremendous partner to the APS team,” said Patrick McDermott, APS senior account manager. “They have always shut off non-essential energy during the peak times for energy consumption during the heat of the summer. Luke has been a part of the Peak Solutions program for many years.”
The Portfolio Optimization office performs energy audits every four years on covered buildings, which are buildings that make up 75 percent of the total energy consumption on base. During the audits, the personnel identify factors that could make the equipment more energy efficient.
The energy office saved more than $96,000 by shedding 1.2 megawatts (1.2 million watts) July 12, 2019, in a span of four hours.
“To compare to my house in July, it peaked at about 10,000 watts, so Luke shed enough energy to power 120 homes,” said Christine Archie, 56th CES energy office manager.
In 2018, the $13,500 reward was used to build new water meters. The money earned from the reward this year will go towards new electric meters for the customers. The customers without electric meters were receiving estimated bill costs, yet the new electric meters would allow the Portfolio Optimization office to bill the customers accurately, said Archie.
In September 1991, President George H.W. Bush declared October as National Energy Awareness Month in an effort to save energy and encourage government agencies and organizations to raise awareness of the importance of energy conservation.
Every action an individual performs to conserve energy makes an impact on the environment, whether it be small or large, said Archie.
“Some tips to save energy is to just turn off the light whenever you leave the room,” said Greg Weitzel, 56th CES engineering technician. “Also, unplug items when you’re not using them. It doesn’t use much energy to keep things plugged in, but it all adds up.”
The Heating, Ventilation, Air Conditioning and Refrigeration (HVAC-R) shop helps in the process of saving energy. A lot of the work is credited to that shop, said Archie.
Every unit on Luke supports the mission whether it be maintaining the jets or tending to the troops. The energy office plays a significant role in supporting the base’s ability to successfully complete that mission by ensuring the energy consumption is at an acceptable level.
“The more money we save in energy related expenses can in-turn be used for flying missions, and that’s our priority,” said Archie. “We’re all here for mission support.”