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By Raymond Hall
DCMA Public Affairs
October is National Energy Action Month. Now is the time for Defense Contract Management Agency employees to take simple steps to conserve energy, to save money and help the environment.
In President Barack Obama’s proclamation, he said, “Let us pledge to reduce our carbon footprint and minimize our energy consumption. Let us strive to continue fighting for a cleaner, stronger, and more secure future for our fellow Americans and for all of humanity.”
The United States continues to create advances in renewable and alternative energy, low-carbon technologies, and developing cleaner fuels, but the president also encouraged energy efficiency. He stated in the 2014 proclamation that the buildings Americans live and work in are responsible for about a third of our nation’s energy use.
The Department of Energy has published a list of actions individuals can take in their workplaces to conserve energy and help achieve a healthier environment. Many of the steps are simple and common sense actions that can have a big impact over time.
—Eliminate incandescent lighting. Use light-emitting diodes, also known as LEDs, rather than incandescent lightbulbs in desktop lighting.
—Turn off the lights when leaving for the night.
—Use natural lighting. When feasible, turn off the lights near windows.
—Where feasible, use task lighting. Instead of brightly lighting an entire room, focus the light where it is needed to directly illuminate work areas.
—Close or adjust the window blinds to block direct sunlight to reduce cooling needs during warm months.
—In the winter, open the blinds on south-facing windows during the day to allow sunlight to naturally heat the workspace. At night, close the blinds to reduce heat loss.
—Unplug equipment that drains energy when not in use such as cell phone chargers, fans, coffeemakers and radios.
—Turn off computer monitors at the end of the work day. Even in sleep or power-saving mode, monitors still use low amounts of energy. However, don’t shut off desktop or laptop computers as they may need to remain on so the Information Technology team can run updates and patches.
—Save paper. Photocopy or print only what is needed. Always use the second side of paper, either by printing on both sides or using the blank side as scrap paper.
—Carpool, bike or use mass transit when commuting to work.
—Consider alternative work schedules and telework to reduce the energy use of greenhouse gas emissions from commuting.
—Reduce business travel by increasing phone, video and web conferencing and training capabilities.
—Use coffee mugs instead of disposable cups. Use reusable water bottles instead of purchasing bottled water, which will reduce solid waste and the energy required to manufacture disposable cups and bottles.
Everyone at DCMA can do their part to help save energy and take control of the agency’s energy consumption. As the president’s proclamation said, “The sustainability of our country and our world in the 21st century rests on our ability to address our shared energy challenges and to encourage diverse, clean, and efficient energy production. During National Energy Action Month, we rededicate ourselves to securing a more prosperous and energy-independent future. As climate change continues to threaten our planet, we must join together to reduce our carbon emissions, protect our environment, and leave behind a cleaner and more resilient world for generations to come.”
Employees can learn more about National Energy Action Month here. To read more about how to conserve energy, click here. To read the entirety of the president’s proclamation, click here.
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