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The Pentagon is Stopped from Going Green

Publication Name

Boston Globe

Author(s)

Juliette Kayyem

When a bunch of Birkenstock-wearing environmentalists clamor for cleaner energy alternatives — biofuels, solar, or wind — it’s not entirely a surprise when Senate Republicans scoff in response. But it is odd that when military leaders make the same recommendation, those same legislators don’t even budge. Much worse, they have now prohibited Big Green from going green.

When Defense Secretary Leon Panetta testifies before Congress next week, he will be waging an uphill battle to preserve the Pentagon’s energy-efficient programs. Despite the fact that the Pentagon is the single biggest consumer of fossil fuels in the entire world, the Senate Armed Services Committee recently voted to prohibit the military from spending money “for the production or sole purchase of an alternative fuel.”

The motivation for the Senate committee vote may be monetary savings, but the numbers, though substantial, show that clean energy is hardly the only big-ticket item on the Pentagon ledger. The entire green initiative requires a $170 million annual investment, a fraction of the average cost of a Navy ship.

Read the full article, The Pentagon is Stopped from Going Green, on the Boston Globe website.

 

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