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Going Green: Sustainability in Action

For more than 40 years, the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers has been working hard to be good environmental stewards.  During the past decade, those efforts have expanded to embrace sustainability -- an umbrella concept that encompasses energy, climate change and the environment to ensure that what we do today doesn't negatively impact tomorrow. Through our work in the environmental and sustainability arenas through all our mission areas (civil works, military missions and research and development), we are making smart investments for the future, saving taxpayer dollars, and working in collaboration with other federal agencies and our partners. These videos and articles showcase sustainability, energy and environmental projects that are helping the Army and the nation.

Sustainability Articles

Going Green: Sustainable coastal North Carolina tidal marsh still thriving after 16 years
In 1996 Wilmington District biologists and engineers, with help from other North Carolina resource agencies, designed and constructed a former dredged material disposal island to offset impacts from construction of the Army Reserve Center in Morehead City, and turned it into a thriving coastal tidal marsh. Sixteen years later the marsh is a sustainable ecosystem that has exceeded the Corps' goals and expectations.
Published: 4/29/2013
Going Green: Wind turbine installed on Fort Buchanan
The first of three 275-kilowatt wind turbines to be erected on Fort Buchanan, Puerto Rico, started producing energy April 19. The turbines are part of a 10-project energy and water reduction effort that, in addition to installing wind power generation, includes solar photovoltaic systems, and water conservation measures.
Published: 4/29/2013
Going Green: Corps builds largest induction solar wall in the country
HARRISBURG, PA -- As the sun beats down on one of the biggest buildings in the country, solar thermal collectors go to work providing enough heat for a 1.7 million square foot warehouse.
Published: 4/29/2013
Going Green: Army Corps of Engineers urges to call before you fill
With construction season here, it is crucial to highlight the fact that streams and wetlands are essential to flood reduction and water-quality improvement, and you must call before you fill," said Paul Leffler, U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, Chicago District Regulatory Program senior project manager.
Published: 4/22/2013
Going Green: District powers debris-removal vessel with biofuel
SAN FRANCISCO -- Soybeans are helping power a debris-removal vessel operated by the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers San Francisco District. Mechanics at the district's baseyard in Sausalito, Calif., overhauled the M/V Raccoon in 2011, to allow its engine to run for the first time on a non-petroleum fuel made entirely from soybeans called B99. The results are already being well received on deck.
Published: 4/22/2013
Going Green: Army Corps unveils new master plan for oyster recovery
Since the turn of the 20th century, oyster populations in the Chesapeake Bay have declined dramatically, largely due to disease, overharvesting, loss of habitat, and degraded water quality. With the State of Maryland placing increased emphasis on restoring the Chesapeake Bay, oyster restoration remains paramount in improving the Bay's vitality.
Published: 4/22/2013
Going Green: Corps prescribed fire program helps double butterfly population
EUGENE, Ore. -- The population of endangered Fender's blue butterflies has doubled at Fern Ridge Reservoir since last year, according to a U.S. Army Corps of Engineers survey. The Corps' 2012 estimate of 3,769 Fender's blue butterflies at 11 sites near the reservoir west of Eugene, Ore., is the species' largest known population and continues a trend of positive population growth since it was first detected on Corps lands in 1998.
Published: 4/15/2013
Going Green: Rare mushrooms discovered after prescribed burn
U.S. Army Corps of Engineers botanists discovered a new site for the rare Pruitt's Amanita mushroom at Fern Ridge Reservoir west of Eugene, Ore., recently. Soils and botany student intern Leanna Van Slambrook spotted some white mushrooms popping out of the charred, soggy ground on the southwest side of the reservoir after a prescribed burn and remembered that a rare Amanita had been found after a burn a few years back.
Published: 4/11/2013
Going Green: Corps-built homes in the LEED
SACRAMENTO, Calif. -- On military installations throughout the nation, the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers has built hangars, fire stations, barracks and homes in a sustainable, energy-saving way, saving taxpayer dollars and working in collaboration with other federal agencies and partners.
Published: 4/8/2013
Going Green: Restoring salmon to an urban park
PORTLAND, Ore. -- Crystal Springs Creek is one of thousands of small streams flowing through the Pacific Northwest. Most provide ideal habitat for fish, but this creek has not supported fish passage for about 40 years. "We have accounts of salmon dating from the 50s, 60s," said Ronda Fast, Environmental Program Coordinator, Portland Bureau of Environmental Services.
Published: 4/8/2013
Going Green: USACE LA District continues innovative partnership
LAKE HAVASU, Ariz. -- The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers Los Angeles District has helped develop a strong partnership at Alamo Dam and along the Bill Williams River to continue sustaining our nation's economic and water resources. "Originally, the dam's functions were flood control, water conservation and recreation," said Rene Vermeeren, the LA District's chief of Hydrology/Hydraulics Branch.
Published: 4/3/2013
Going Green: Corps hydropower is clean, reliable, efficient, flexible, renewable and sustainable
WALLA WALLA, Wash. -- In the Pacific Northwest, the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers produces significant hydroelectric power for the nation at its dams on the Columbia and Snake rivers. Hydroelectric power is clean, reliable, efficient, flexible, renewable and sustainable. The Corps of Engineers is the Nation's largest producer of hydropower, and one of the largest in the world.
Published: 3/29/2013
Going Green: The Silvery Minnow and the Rio Grande
The bosque, or forest, surrounding the Rio Grande River, is the longest continuous forest of cottonwood trees in the world. As signs of spring begin to show in the bosque, environmentalists, biologists and others continue their efforts to understand river flow issues along the Middle Rio Grande.
Published: 3/29/2013
Going Green: Protecting our Great Lakes from the invasive Asian carp
"Working with our partners to protect our national treasures, our Great Lakes, from aquatic nuisance species is critical," said U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (USACE), Chicago District Commander Col. Frederic A. Drummond Jr. "The Corps mission is about sustaining our water resources, sustaining our communities and sustaining our nation's economic resources."
Published: 3/29/2013