Military Makes Huge Solar Power Deal

( – Since taking office in 2021, President Joe Biden has made it a high priority to tackle the climate crisis. Part of his administration’s initiative is a 65% emissions reduction by 2030 and achieving net-zero emissions across all federal operations by 2050. Biden also aimed to reach 100% carbon pollution-free electricity (CFE) by 2030. Recently, the Department of Defense (DOD) took a huge step toward that goal in the Carolinas.

On June 18, the DOD made an announcement at Fort Liberty — the Army base formerly known as Fort Bragg in North Carolina. The department has agreed to partner with Duke Energy to supply solar power to five military installations in the Carolinas. In North Carolina, those locations include Fort Liberty, Johnson Air Force Base, Marine Corps Air Station Cherry Point, and Marine Corps Base Camp Lejeune. In South Carolina, Shaw Air Force Base is also part of the deal.

The $248 million contract will supply about 4.8 million megawatt hours of CFE over 15 years, stemming from two solar facilities in SC. The newly constructed sites are set to be completed and operational by September 2026.

The DOD said that by taking this action, the department would help Biden deliver on his promise of 100% CFE by the end of the next six years. Assistant Secretary of Defense for Energy Brendan Owens called it a “significant step forward,” adding that constructing and using “clean, renewable energy” boosts US “resilience in support of the warfighter and DoD’s mission.”

Federal Chief Sustainability Officer at the White House Council on Environmental Quality Andrew Mayock said the Defense Department is “leading by example on climate change.” He stated this would encourage “new clean electricity production,” create jobs, and “enhance our national security.”

Duke Energy CEO Julie Janson said the DoD’s decision to partner with them not only furthers its coal of using clean energy but allows “millions of customers across the Carolinas” to benefit as well.

Copyright 2024,