Energy & Environment

Pentagon requests information from clean energy suppliers in push to reduce emissions

The federal government took a step toward lowering the military’s carbon footprint, seeking information on Thursday from potential clean electricity suppliers. 

The General Services Administration, which is in charge of federal purchasing, and the Pentagon put out a joint request asking for information from potential clean electricity suppliers. 

The move comes as part of a broader push by the Biden administration to cut the federal government’s planet-warming emissions. 

Overall, Biden signed an executive order saying he wanted federal government operations to reach carbon neutrality by 2050 and get all of its power from clean sources by 2030.

The latest request notes that the effort to try to meet these targets will be phased into existing electricity purchases and possibly through new purchases as well. 

However, Biden’s December order provides some leeway for the military, saying the head of an agency can exempt certain activities related to national security, protecting intelligence and combat. 

This generated pushback from progressive lawmakers last week, who noted the military’s sizable climate change contribution. 

A press release announcing the move this week notes that the Defense Department is the federal government’s largest energy user, and one of the world’s largest electricity buyers. 

Federal Chief Sustainability Officer Andrew Mayock, in the press release called the move a “key initial milestone” in meeting the President’s goal of powering Federal facilities with 24/7 carbon pollution-free electricity.

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