Military is Developing Renewable Energy Technology

Energy industry: Why the military is going to renewable energy

As MIT Technology Review reports, the military is continuing to go full-out in developing renewable energy technology. The motive of the armed services stems from its desire to more effectively fulfill its mission to fight wars than out of an ideological desire to save the planet.

For example, a remote Army base in a war zone that runs on diesel generators has to be resupplied with fuel periodically. Fuel truck convoys are subject to enemy attack, and the supply lines tend to be expensive to maintain. When the same base deploys solar panels and wind generators and generates its own biofuel, it becomes less vulnerable to having its supply of fuel cut off. A vehicle running with a hybrid engine will not have to refuel as often.

Even facilities outside war zones can remain more secure if they run on hardened microgrids powered by renewables. If a cyber attack or an EMP device takes down the electrical grid, military bases that are thus outfitted can remain operational and can help facilitate the recovery.

Of course, the effect of this military investment in renewables is bound to have some effect on the civilian market. The cost of green energy technology will decrease as the military develops it. Versions of the same sorts of power-generating infrastructure that powers military bases will start cropping up in towns and neighborhoods across the world. Some homes and businesses in the Western world will be able to go off the main grid. Many communities in the developing countries will never have to go on the grid, to begin with.