MARINE CORPS AIR GROUND COMBAT CENTER TWENTYNINE PALMS -- In an effort to reduce energy consumption in the U.S. by 20 percent, the Department of Defense created the Resident Energy Conservation Program to help improve the quality of life for families by cutting electricity waste and using saved money to give back to the community. Lincoln Military Housing hosted an open forum to familiarize residents with the program at the LMH’s Ocotillo Community Center, Oct. 23, 2015.
“The RECP program is an Department of the Navy initiative that was implemented about 5 years ago with the intent of finding ways to conserve energy and utilities in privatized military housing,” said Andrew Killion, regional and national energy manager, LMH. “We wanted to have the event today as an extra opportunity and resource for all of our residents, to answer the families’ questions and concerns, and to speak more in depth on the program.”
The program accesses homes and then places them into ‘like-type groups’ based on size, age, number of bedrooms and other factors that influence energy usage. The average usage for each group is calculated monthly, allowing for a 10 percent buffer. This helps LMH residents to be more mindful of their energy usage.
“The program provides some measure of accountability of electricity usage within households,” Killion said. “Families that conserve well can get rebates and money back, while families that use a lot of electricity might have to pay some every month.”
According to Killion, it’s important to note that residents are only paying for that extra electricity outside of the normal usage, not a whole electric bill as they would out in town.
LMH also used the event as an opportunity to disseminate information on how families can better conserve electricity. According to Killion, a portion of the money saved from conserved electricity can be allocated elsewhere including improvements of homes, playgrounds, and community centers.
“With the funds saved by the RECP program we are able to do more of the things that we wanted to do for our residents,” Killion said. “It’s the combination of the little things that add up in the big ways. Remembering to turn off the lights when you leave the room can add up over the months.”
While the program is still looking to improve with feedback from families; it is part of the DoD’s efforts to improve the environment, preserve America’s natural resources and reduce our dependence on oil and other fossil fuels.
For more information on RECP and details regarding your installation’s official program roll-out dates, visit www.LincolnRECP.com.
Making RECP work for you.
• Check your home for inefficiencies, such as windows that don’t close properly.
• Perform a self-audit of your family’s energy use.
• Unplug unused lights.
• Wash and dry only full loads of laundry using the coldest settings possible.
• Use the dishwasher for full loads only and use the air dry feature instead of heat.
• Don’t block your heating vents with furniture or other items.
• Switch to CFLs (combat fluorescent light bulbs), which use 75 percent less energy than incandescent bulbs.
• Check on your food with the oven light instead of opening the door and releasing hot air.
• Cool your homes in the summer by keeping your blinds, drapes or shades closed, then open them up in the winter and let the warm sunshine in.
• Keep all windows and doors closed while using your home’s air conditioning or heating systems.