By Joseph W. Murphy
Director, Fleet Installations and Environmental Readiness Division, U.S. Fleet Forces Command
U.S. Fleet Forces Command hosted type commanders and their operational unit-level leaders at the U.S. Fleet Forces Fleet Energy Training Forum March 25. It was a great turnout and I thank you for your participation. The forum provided an appropriate venue to make all hands aware of what Navy is striving to achieve in energy efficiency.
Our goal was to raise the level of knowledge of our fleet operators and enlist their support to change our energy culture. Doing so will not only improve our energy efficiency, but also maintain our combat effectiveness. Secretary of the Navy Ray Mabus has provided clear direction on energy efficiency, and U.S. Fleet Forces is moving out. Using the Readiness Kill Chain methodology, we’ve implemented a comprehensive approach to energy use.
The one theme heard throughout the day, from all echelons of command, was the need for us to change our energy culture from one of consumption to one of conservation so we retain combat effectiveness. A key principle of the Readiness Kill Chain is that all hands, from SECNAV to the deck plates in an engine room, have a key role in energy efficiency.
SECNAV has made energy stewardship the “new normal.” Therefore, as fleet operators, we need to routinely include energy factors in our deliberate operational planning process. Then we have to make the routine, routine! There are both operational and economic imperatives driving our energy conservation efforts. Obviously changing how we use our energy resources saves money in an increasingly austere fiscal environment, but it also yields tangible warfighting advantages by giving us longer legs, reducing refueling vulnerabilities and providing an operational energy reserve in the event that circumstances require a burst of speed or a longer dwell time.
Congratulations to all SECNAV Energy Award winners recognized at last week’s forum: USS Nicholas, USS Roosevelt, USS Kearsarge, USS Gravely, USNS Robert E. Peary, and USNS Grapple. You are setting a terrific example for others to emulate.
Thank you for your committed participation. Remember, we have evolved from “save energy if you can” to “save energy unless you can’t.” Finally, we have posted all of the forum briefs online. I encourage you to visit that website to review the content, and to provide feedback on the forum as well.