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Burning the Midnight Photovoltaics

October 23, 2013, 1:57 pm

One of my students is working on a paper on how much solar power each branch of the military uses. It’s a fascinating topic, as the military has gotten (partly because of outside pressure, partly because of the usefulness of mobile energy sources like solar power for fighting wars) extremely interested in renewable energy. This chart graphically suggests the scale of the challenge and the sheer size of the American military:

Chart from Schuyler Null, “Defense Sustainability: Energy Efficiency and the Battlefield,” Global Green USA, February 2010. http://www.globalgreen.org/docs/publication-112-1.pdf

DODenergyconsumption

The Pentagon consumes as much energy as Portugal, and more than Nigeria and Denmark and New Zealand. The US military is responsible for 1% of American energy consumption. That’s a lot.

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