SAN DIEGO - The deputy assistant secretary of the Navy for Environment toured USS Makin Island (LHD 8) Oct. 18 and observed some the ship's innovative "Green Team" environmental programs during a recent visit to San Diego.
Donald Schregardus serves as the Navy's principal policy advisor on environmental programs, including conservation of natural and cultural resources, compliance with environmental laws and regulations and cleanup of contaminated sites and programs for pollution prevention.
"USS Makin Island exemplifies the Navy's efforts to produce weapons systems that integrate environmental lifecycle analysis decisions throughout the acquisition process," said Schregardus. "The Navy's environmental ethos is an integral part of this ships design and operations."
Schregardus said that Makin Island is an outstanding example of the Navy's progress toward incorporating clean, efficient, environmentally sustainable design into the fleet.
USS Makin Island's "Green Team" is led by the ship's First Class Petty Officers Association, along with officers and enlisted personnel from every division on the ship. The group serves as the catalyst behind the ship's recycling and energy conservation program.
"The officers and crew have taken this mindset to a new level with their exceptional 'Green Team' initiatives that embody the Secretary of the Navy's goals of promoting a greener Navy," he added.
During his visit, Schregardus was briefed on the ship's innovative propulsion system and ship-wide recycling and energy conservation programs. He also toured the ship's solid waste processing rooms.
"Makin Island has set the bar with its leading edge clean energy initiatives," said Schregardus. "Having visited Makin Island, I feel confident that the officers and Sailors of today's Navy are promoting a greener, sustainable Navy."
USS Makin Island Sailors who assisted with the visit said they enjoyed the visit and his interest in the ship's recycling and energy conservation programs.
"He was pleased with our 'Green Team' initiatives," said Ensign Anna Salvaggio, who serves as the Green Team leader. "He understands that an operational ship can be environmentally conscious and save the Navy money."
"By creating more awareness of our Green Team, I really hope other ships in the Navy will join us in our conservation efforts," said Salvaggio. "We could really save the Navy a substantial amount of money!"
USS Makin Island is the only U.S. Navy ship with a hybrid electric propulsion system. By using this unique propulsion system, the Navy expects to see fuel savings of more than $250 million during the ship's lifecycle, proving the Navy's commitment to energy awareness and conservation.
This initiative is one of many throughout the Navy and Marine Corps that will enable the Department of the Navy to achieve the Secretary of the Navy's energy goals to improve energy security and efficiency afloat and ashore, increase energy independence and help lead the nation toward a clean energy economy.