Note to Editors: A photo of Ron Sega is available with the news release at http://newsinfo.colostate.edu/.
Ron Sega, former Under Secretary of the U.S. Air Force and current Vice President for Applied Research at the Colorado State University Research Foundation, led the Air Force team that won the overall Presidential Award for Leadership in Federal Energy Management in Washington, D.C., today. These awards honor federal employees for their support, leadership and efforts in promoting and improving federal energy management.
The Air Force total savings of 3.3 trillion Btu achieved in fiscal year 2006 equals the annual household energy needs for a city the size of Boulder, Colo.
Sega led the creation of a new energy strategy for the Air Force. This strategy and its implementation were overseen by an executive team, the Air Force Energy Senior Focus Group, which was chartered by Air Force Secretary Michael W. Wynne and chaired by Sega. This comprehensive strategy addressed demand-side energy efficiencies, supply-side energy assurance options and the establishment of a culture of conservation.
"Dr. Sega’s achievements in energy efficiency and sustainability demonstrate that Colorado is a leader in this field. Developing smarter, better energy management systems for businesses, organizations and even homes is a critical component of helping Colorado advance the New Energy Economy," said Tom Plant, director of the Governor’s Energy Office for the state of Colorado.
The Air Force achieved $100 million in energy-related savings and cost avoidance in 2006, providing top-level leadership on a comprehensive strategy for improving conservation and reducing energy use. For example, changes were implemented that resulted in a 9 percent reduction in flying hours and a 7 percent reduction in jet fuel used – major achievements given that the Air Force is the largest user of energy in the federal government with an energy bill of $7 billion.
In 2006, the Air Force was the largest green power purchaser of electricity in the federal government and the third largest in the United States. The Air Force also tested a 50/50 blend of conventional jet fuel and synthetic fuel in a B-52 bomber aircraft.
"Colorado State University has proven that it is a leader among institutions of higher education in the effort to improve our nation’s energy efficiency and conservation through the research it conducts, the classes it offers and the faculty it employs – and Dr. Ron Sega, the vice president for Applied Research at the University’s Research Foundation is one of its shining stars," said U.S. Sen. Ken Salazar. "Dr. Sega’s work to improve the Air Force’s energy conservation and management is the exact type of leadership our nation and colleges and universities need. I applaud him for receiving the 2007 Presidential Award for Leadership in Federal Energy Management."
"Dr. Sega’s achievements at the federal level provide enormous benefit for the students, faculty and scientists at Colorado State University," said Bill Farland, vice president for Research at CSU. "The Air Force clearly sets an example for Colorado and the nation in use of renewable and alternative energy sources."
Sega’s experience will enhance CSU’s contributions to the Colorado Renewable Energy Collaboratory and strengthen its ties with the National Renewable Energy Laboratory in Golden, Colo., Farland added.
"It was a great team effort to address energy in a systematic and comprehensive way," Sega said. "We are very honored to receive this award."
Among the achievements led by the focus group, the Air Force:
– consumed 5.6 percent less water than in 2005;
– dispensed alternative vehicle fuels from 74 bases;
– included sustainable design features in nearly 40 percent of new construction projects;
– awarded a contract to build the world’s largest photovoltaic array at Nellis Air Force Base in Nevada, providing 33 percent to 40 percent of the base’s power needs; and
– performed energy audits on 13.3 percent of base facilities.