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U.S. Army environmental initiatives for Big Island

MEDIA RELEASE

Deputy Assistant Secretary of the Army for Environment, Safety, and Occupational Health, Addison “Tad” Davis, IV, met with Hawaii legislators Thursday, Feb. 26 at the State Capitol to discuss three U.S. Army environmental initiatives on the Big Island, reported the Hawaii House Blog.

“Hydrogen Highway” – The Army is working with the Hawaii Natural Energy Institute and the Environmental Protection Agency to implement recommendations from the Hawaii Clean Energy Initiative. One initiative is working to establish a hydrogen fueling station at the Hawaii Volcanoes National Park.

“I am excited about the possibility of the County of Hawaii and Hawaii state government to partner with the Army to allow and enable our local government fleet to fuel up at a hydrogen fuel station,” said Rep. Cindy Evans, a former vice chairwoman of the House Energy & Environmental Protection committee. “As more county and state vehicles turn to hydrogen fuel, not only will we decrease our dependency on foreign oil, but we will also see significant savings in the future. My hope is that this first station will be one of many that will dot a ‘hydrogen highway’ where private and public vehicles can tap into the benefits of this renewable energy source in the future.”

Sustainable Military Complexes ­ – Wind turbines and photovoltaic solar panels will help the Pohakuloa Training Area (PTA) and the Kilauea Military Camp (KMC) become completely self-sustainable complexes on the Big Island.

“We are pleased that the Army’s sustainability initiatives are in line with the Hawaii 2050 Sustainability Plan which was the result of the Hawaii 2050 Sustainability Task Force convened by the Hawaii State Legislature in 2005 and submitted its report in 2008,” Evans said.

Depleted Uranium Update – Deputy Assistant Secretary Davis gave an update on the Army’s continuing assessment on Depleted Uranium (DU) at the Pohakuloa Training Area and Schofield Barracks:

There is a continuing assessment of health risks and data from air monitoring stations to measure levels of DU at PTA. In the near future, the United States Nuclear Regulatory Commission will review and set restrictions, limits, and mitigation measures on DU levels at Pohakuloa. Currently, based on historical usage and ground assessments, there are 950 acres that will no longer be used.

“The money being spent by the military to insure public safety is important to safeguard and preserve our quality of life on the Big Island,” Evans said.

— Find out more:

Army Web site: www.imcom.pac.army.mil/DU
Hawaii House Blog: www.hawaiihouseblog.blogspot.c…

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