Us navy and the “great green fleet” essay should be at least 300


In a 2011 speech, US Secretary of the Navy Ray Mabus said:

“The Navy  has been at the forefront of technological change on energy for 150  years. In the 1850s we went from sail to coal, in the early part of the  20th century we moved from coal to oil, and then in the 1950s we  pioneered the use of nuclear fuel in our warships. Innovation in the way  we power our ships has been one of the core competencies of the United  States Navy throughout its whole history. Now, at every one of those  transitions, every time, there were a whole lot of folks who said, this  is nuts.” (Mabus, 2011).

US government and military contracting have featured in many energy innovations throughout US history (Links to an external site.),  from 100 octane gasoline in the 1930s to solar arrays for the space  program. Many of these energy innovations came from partnerships with  industry, but some were incubated solely from within military research  labs and testing facilities. Today, US  military officials, both uniformed and civilian, speak about the  urgency of confronting climate change and its deep energy use cause. The US Navy is seemingly at the vanguard of alternative fuels development for conventional uses (Links to an external site.), such as in ships, yet, we are unsure how the effort is faring and whether it will be an expensive flash in the pan.


Mabus, R. (2011, September 28). Remarks by the Honorable Ray Mabus, Secretary of the Navy at the Washington Energy Summit. (Links to an external site.) [PDF, File Size 53.7KB] Washington, DC. Retrieved from

Based on your considered review of this module’s readings as well as  your reflection upon the first two modules, evaluate the questions  below.

  • How has the US defense community addressed climate change and its energy use drivers?
  • Do you believe the US military can lead the whole of the US by  significantly changing its own energy use to reduce or replace fossil  fuels, particularly oil?  Why or why not?
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