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The Consolidated Bachelors Quarters laundry facilities installed solar panels aboard Marine Corps Air Station Miramar, Calif. The solar panels heat water before it enters the boilers to conserve energy.

Photo by Sgt. Melissa Lee

MCAS Miramar wins EPA Award for Energy

11 May 2015 | Sgt. Lillian Stephens 3rd Marine Aircraft Wing

The United States Environmental Protection Agency presented Marine Corps Air Station Miramar, California, with the 2015 National Award for Energy in the EPA's Federal Green Challenge, April 28.

The FGC is a national effort under the EPA's Sustainable Materials Management program, which encourages federal agencies throughout the country to reduce the federal government's environmental impact and lead by example.

This is the second consecutive year that MCAS Miramar has won the award, which competed against more than 400 government facilities.

The air station reduced its fuel oil consumption by 98 percent, which is largely due to one hangar's switch from diesel fuel to natural gas, a project managed by Armando Romo, the Engineering Project Manager in the station's Public Works.

"Reduction in diesel fuel from the Hangar 5 project was 75 to 80 percent [of fuel oil consumption]." said Mick Wasco, MCAS Miramar Energy Manager. "We also decreased our natural gas consumption."

The installation decreased natural gas consumption by taking advantage of Southern California's mild climate, which doesn't need heating systems for most of the year. It also integrated direct digital controls for facility heating systems.

This award shows progress, that the installation is being successful at energy efficiency and carbon emission reduction, which is part of an initiative by the state of California, Wasco explained.

MCAS Miramar plans to replace many boilers across the air station, making them more efficient by converting from propane to natural gas.