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Biden presents DLA, other agencies environmental awards.

Vice President Joe Biden and Deputy Defense Secretary William Lynn III presented a Secretary of Defense Environmental Award to a former DLA depot in a Pentagon ceremony on June 3.

The former Defense Depot Memphis, TN, won in the Installation Environmental Restoration category. The facility, which closed in 1997 under a BRAC program, was cited for applying innovation and forward thinking to speed clean-up operations and successful land reuse.

Biden praised DLA and the other winners for leading the way in environmental stewardship as they lead the way in the nation's defense. "This is an outfit that does it all," Biden said. "When I look at the accomplishments of the teams we honor today, I am genuinely impressed by how our nation's armed forces, while fighting two wars overseas and many other contingencies across the globe, can still lead the fight for effective environmental stewardship."

Biden noted that the Defense Department, as the US' largest employer, land owner, and energy consumer, is making "a gigantic impact" in committing to environmental protection. The winners have stood above the rest in protecting wetlands, promoting recycling programs, and preserving archeological sites through "innovation, improvising, as well as simple, plain hard work," he said. "But they don't stand alone," he added, pointing to the extensive environmental focus throughout the department.

The $4.3 billion proposed for the department's environmental programs in fiscal year 2010 will continue this effort, Biden said. "Since the DOD is the single-largest consumer of energy in US, it is important that we also be a leader in efficiency and in using renewable fuels."

Ashton Carter, Undersecretary of Defense for Acquisition, Technology and Logistics, opened the ceremony noting the lasting impact the awardees' "extraordinary contributions" will have. "These men and women are committed to maintaining and restoring our natural resources, not only to address the complex security challenges, but to ensure that generations to come will benefit from our nation's unquantifiable richness," he said. The Secretary of Defense has been recognizing installations, teams, and individuals for outstanding achievement in environmental management each year since 1962. A panel of experts representing federal and state agencies, academia, and the public selected this year's winners.

The other environmental award winners honored were:

* Camp Ripley Maneuver and Training Center, a Minnesota Army National Guard facility, was the winner in the Large Installation Natural Resources Conservation category. With more than 19 miles of Mississippi River frontage, it was recognized for its role in protecting the river and its delicate ecosystem.

* Fort Drum Cultural Resources Team, Fort Drum, NY, won in the Team/Individual Cultural Resources Management category. The team was honored for its role in protecting more than 240 prehistoric and 700 historic archeological sites, as well as six districts on the National Register of Historic Places.

* US Army Garrison Bamberg, Germany, won in the Overseas Installation Environmental Quality category. The post was honored for its environmental management system that promotes pollution prevention, recycling, public health, and conservation.

* Naval Air Station Whidbey Island, WA, won in the Non-Industrial Installation Pollution Prevention category. The base was recognized for its combined pollution prevention efforts credited with reducing hazardous waste, solid waste, air and water contaminants, and other pollutants.

* Vandenberg AFB, CA, won in the Installation Cultural Resources Management category. The base was honored for implementing an integrated cultural resources management plan that protects and preserves more than 1600 irreplaceable archeological resources and historic properties, 14 rock art sites, and other cultural assets.

* Environmental Management Division, Hill AFB, UT, won in the Industrial Installation Environmental Quality category. The division was recognized for environmental excellence in managing nearly I million acres of the Utah Test and Training Range as it supported five wings and about 40 tenant units.

* The 14th Civil Engineer Squadron Pollution Prevention Team, Columbus AFB, MS, won in the Team/Individual Pollution Prevention category. The team was honored for its environmental program management efforts that include an innovative glass recycling program, increased use of biodiesel and other alternative energy sources, and Earth Day-related education outreach.

by Donna Miles, American Forces Press Service
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Title Annotation:GOVERNMENT NEWS; Vice President Joe Biden on Defense Logistics Agency
Author:Miles, Donna
Publication:Defense Transportation Journal
Geographic Code:1USA
Date:Aug 1, 2009
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