The United States Navy has signed an energy savings performance contract (ESPC) with Johnson Controls to make the naval base in Guam more energy efficient and help reduce the base’s overall environmental impact.

The project includes a large-scale photovoltaic power generation system and energy efficient air conditioning systems. It’s expected to reduce annual energy costs by $1.7 million while reducing carbon emissions. The energy conversion measures are expected to reduce the base’s electricity consumption, with an estimated 3 percent coming from renewable energy sources.

“This project is a major step towards the Navy’s mission of reducing facility energy consumption and emissions at our Guam base,” said Capt. Paul Fuligni, Naval Facilities Engineering Command, Marianas commanding officer.

The project includes retrofitting more than 9,000 lighting fixtures and 87 air handlers, as well as installing a Metasys building management system to serve the base’s 49 buildings.

The ESPC allows the base to significantly reduce its utility costs and carbon footprint while using those savings to repay the project capital investment over the term of the contract without increasing its operating budget. Funds that would normally pay for monthly utility (electric and gas) expenses will be redirected to repay the capital investment on the project.

“This project is a great example of combining renewable energy technology with innovative energy conservation solutions,” said Mark Wagner, vice president of government affairs with Johnson Controls. “We greatly appreciate the opportunity to help the Navy work toward its goal of achieving 25 percent of its energy needs from renewable sources by 2025.”

Located about 7,500 miles from the U.S. mainland, the Navy base in Guam is often affected by inclement weather due its geographic location. The equipment used in the project is designed to handle tropical humidity, saltwater and the potential for typhoon winds in excess of 170 mph.

Energy enhancements to the base are increasingly important to reduce costs because of its anticipated growth of more than 25,000 new residents during the next few years, including military personnel, their dependents and associated support personnel.