Sustainable Design for the 21st Century

GSA Helps Army Attain Net Zero Energy

by Brent Sauser

The Department of Defense and GSA are increasing their commitment to building Net Zero.  The following article details this commitment to achieve Net Zero by 2020 for Fort Carson, Colorado. 

WASHINGTON (Sep. 17, 2014)The U.S. General Services Administration (GSA) released a report designed to help the Army attain net zero energy (NZE) through employing high-impact energy efficiency strategies. This new report presents the findings of a green building demonstration project completed at Fort Carson, a historic 72-year-old Army base near Colorado Springs, Colo. As a flagship in the Army’s Net Zero Initiative, Fort Carson has set a net zero energy goal for the entire base by the year 2020, which means that the base – home to approximately 900 buildings equaling about 14-million square feet of real property – will need to generate as much energy as it consumes by the goal year.

Green Building Demonstration Project at Fort Carson

Studying six different Army building types, GSA identified four areas of opportunity to help Fort Carson achieve energy efficiency breakthroughs: thermal envelope optimization, daylighting and lighting system performance, NZE building system retrofit strategies, and occupant behavior.  Building system strategies were evaluated and prioritized based on their payoff over the lifetime of the buildings.

Green Buildings at Fort Carson

  • Fort Carson has constructed more than 70 LEED-certified green buildings on base, which have contributed to a 17 percent decrease in energy use per square foot since 2003.
  • The base has also installed solar panels, solar hot water heaters, and ground source heat pumps, which have helped to increase the share of Fort Carson’s energy use provided by renewable sources to 3.5 percent, and growing.

CLICK HERE to read more about the move to Net Zero for Fort Carson by 2020.

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