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New wind turbines help Air Force go green

The Air Force's two new wind turbines at the Massachusetts
Military Reservation in Cape Cod, Mass., seen from a distance, pose an
interesting contrast to an ornamental traditional windmill atop a local Cape
Cod shop. The 1.5 megawatt wind turbines, in addition to an existing
turbine, were built to offset electrical costs for powering numerous
groundwater cleanup systems at the reservation. The turbines will pay for
all the Air Force's electric needs for groundwater remediation at MMR,
saving more than $1.5 million per year. (U.S. Air Force photo/Scott Dehainaut)

The Air Force's two new wind turbines at the Massachusetts Military Reservation in Cape Cod, Mass., seen from a distance, pose an interesting contrast to an ornamental traditional windmill atop a local Cape Cod shop. The 1.5 megawatt wind turbines, in addition to an existing turbine, were built to offset electrical costs for powering numerous groundwater cleanup systems at the reservation. The turbines will pay for all the Air Force's electric needs for groundwater remediation at MMR, saving more than $1.5 million per year. (U.S. Air Force photo/Scott Dehainaut)

A close-up view of one of the Air Force's two new wind turbines
at the Massachusetts Military Reservation in Cape Cod, Mass. The 1.5
megawatt wind turbines, in addition to an existing turbine, were built to
offset electrical costs for powering numerous groundwater cleanup systems at
the reservation. The turbines will pay for all the Air Force's electric
needs for groundwater remediation at MMR, saving more than $1.5 million per
year. They will also offset emissions generated by fossil-fueled power
plants, reducing the Air Force's carbon footprint. (U.S. Air Force
photo/Scott Dehainaut)

A close-up view of one of the Air Force's two new wind turbines at the Massachusetts Military Reservation in Cape Cod, Mass. The 1.5 megawatt wind turbines, in addition to an existing turbine, were built to offset electrical costs for powering numerous groundwater cleanup systems at the reservation. The turbines will pay for all the Air Force's electric needs for groundwater remediation at MMR, saving more than $1.5 million per year. They will also offset emissions generated by fossil-fueled power plants, reducing the Air Force's carbon footprint. (U.S. Air Force photo/Scott Dehainaut)

Under secretary of the Air Force Erin Conaton speaks at a ribbon cutting ceremony for two new Air Force wind turbines Oct. 28, 2011, at the Massachusetts Military Reservation in Cape Cod, Mass. The 1.5 megawatt wind turbines, in addition to an existing turbine, were built to offset electrical costs for powering numerous groundwater cleanup systems
at the reservation. The turbines will pay for all the Air Force's electric needs for groundwater remediation at MMR, saving more than $1.5 million per year. They will also offset emissions generated by fossil-fueled power plants, reducing the Air Force's carbon footprint. (U.S. Air Force photo/Scott Dehainaut)

Under secretary of the Air Force Erin Conaton speaks at a ribbon cutting ceremony for two new Air Force wind turbines Oct. 28, 2011, at the Massachusetts Military Reservation in Cape Cod, Mass. The 1.5 megawatt wind turbines, in addition to an existing turbine, were built to offset electrical costs for powering numerous groundwater cleanup systems at the reservation. The turbines will pay for all the Air Force's electric needs for groundwater remediation at MMR, saving more than $1.5 million per year. They will also offset emissions generated by fossil-fueled power plants, reducing the Air Force's carbon footprint. (U.S. Air Force photo/Scott Dehainaut)

WASHINGTON (AFNS) -- Under Secretary of the Air Force Erin C. Conaton visited the Massachusetts Military Reservation in Cape Cod, Mass., Oct. 28 for a ribbon cutting ceremony for two new wind turbines.

The 1.5 megawatt wind turbines, in addition to an existing turbine, were built to offset electrical costs for powering numerous groundwater cleanup systems at the reservation.

The turbines will pay for all the Air Force's electric needs for groundwater remediation at the military reservation, saving more than $1.5 million per year, officials said. The turbines will also offset emissions generated by fossil-fueled power plants, reducing the Air Force's carbon footprint.

"The future is bright for environmental clean-up, renewable energy and energy conservation at the Massachusetts Military Reservation," Conaton said. "As Air Force missions expand and change over time, we will be integrating the full spectrum of energy considerations into our facility design and construction projects and into our mission operations."

As the Air Force under secretary, Conaton is responsible for ensuring the Air Force has what it needs to perform its missions in support of national security. Dependence on fossil fuels can be a liability in both supply and cost, generating the need to decrease demand and diversify supply sources. The wind turbine project is an example of an Air Force initiative to meet this need.

"The Air Force currently operates 85 on-base renewable energy projects at 43 installations, playing a significant role in the national strategy to establish greater energy security via conservation and alternative energy use," Conaton said.

According to U.S. Environmental Protection Agency reports, the Air Force is the third largest purchaser of green power in the federal government.

"The Air Force values and respects the natural resources placed in our trust; this is the environment where we live, train and operate," Conaton said. "Every Airman must protect and conserve these resources for the benefit of present and future mission requirements and for the benefit of present and future generations."

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