The Resident Energy Conservation Program that will go into effect at Quantico base housing next year is a program directed by the Office of the Secretary of Defense aimed at increasing energy efficiency and conservation in privatized housing units.
Beginning in April 2013, average monthly energy consumption for similarly sized houses in each neighborhood is determined each month, and residents pay for electricity if they use more than 10 percent above the average. Those who conserve more than 10 percent below the average get a rebate. Those within 10 percent of the average will neither pay nor receive refunds. Averages will change from month to month.
“It’s all about conserving our resources, changing our behavior,” said Oscar Almond, Quantico’s Family Housing Branch head.
The program was piloted at Marine Corps Air Station Beaufort, S.C.; Marine Corps Recruit Depot Parris Island, S.C.; and Marine Corps Base Hawaii between August 2010 and the beginning of this year.
Currently, the Basic Allowance for Housing covers all gas and electricity costs for base residents, which leaves little incentive to conserve energy, Almond said.
Between October and December, Quantico will hold town hall meetings and conduct other outreach to inform residents of the program, Almond said. Then, from January through March, tenants will receive what he calls “consumption reports,” telling them whether they would have paid or received anything under the program that month, and how much. “It will be like a sample bill,” said Almond.
Actual billing and refunding will begin April 1.
The money saved is then to be reinvested in the neighborhoods, in capital improvements, amenities and other quality-of-life programs.
Lincoln Military Housing pays the base for electricity each month, Almond said. “What the government is hoping is that that cost will go down, which will save that partner money and they can take that and use it in the community.”
Residents have already received a letter notifying them of the impending change to their lease agreements.