Joint Force Energy Wargame

By Connie Braesch DLA Energy Public Affairs

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Fuel storage, distribution capacity and threats to energy supply chains were tested during the Joint Force Energy Wargame at U.S. Marine Corps Forces, Pacific, Camp Smith, Hawaii, Aug. 19-23.

Hosted by the U.S. Indo-Pacific Command and sponsored by the Deputy Assistant Secretary of Defense for Energy and Joint Staff J4, the game assessed gaps in fuel storage and distribution, identified opportunities to increase energy supply chain resiliency, and evaluated the implications of threats to energy sources.

“This joint wargame was strategically important for validating our Concepts of Operations and the services and support we provide the Warfighter,” said Defense Logistics Agency Energy Commander Air Force Brig. Gen. Albert Miller. “It was the first of its kind to focus on energy-related issues and will prove valuable as we anticipate future needs and continually work to improve supply chain resiliency and security.”

According to the Office of the Assistant Secretary of Defense for Sustainment, Operational Energy in partnership with the Office of Secretary of Defense, Joint Staff, Combatant Commands, and the Military Departments continuously participate in the planning, execution and assessment of wargames. The efforts directly align with the 2018 National Defense Strategy and the goal is to increase the lethality of the Warfighter and improve Department decision-making in operation plans, concept and capability development, and program investments.

“Results of the wargame will include qualitatively derived energy risks and mitigations for the specific scenario as well as a joint quantitative data set for follow-on analyses,” said Defense Logistics Agency Energy Hawaii Commander Navy Cmdr. Eric Lockett. “This information is essential to developing a logistics strategy that supports, and in many ways enhances, the Warfighter’s mission capability across the Indo-Pacific region.”

While on the island for the wargame, energy leaders from across the DoD visited the Red Hill Underground Fuel Storage Facility. Miller along with Deputy Assistant Secretary of the Air Force for Operational Energy Roberto Guerrero, Deputy Assistant Secretary of Defense for Energy Lisa Jung, and Navy Region Hawaii and Naval Surface Group Middle Pacific Commander Navy Rear Adm. Robert Chadwick and several staff members toured the facility and learned about the Navy’s maintenance and oversight.

During the tour, Naval Supply Systems Command Fleet Logistics Center Pearl Harbor Fuel Department Director Navy Lt. Cmdr. Blake Whittle briefed the leaders and staff on the facility’s rigorous, ongoing clean, inspect and repair maintenance program. Red Hill is a national strategic asset and designated a National Historic Engineering Landmark by the American Society of Civil Engineers in 1995.

According to the ASCE, the 20 vertical storage tanks – each large enough to contain a 20-story building – are constructed in solid rock and consist of 2.5- to 4-feet thick reinforced concrete and a steel plate connected by tunnels to a harbor-side pumping station more than two-and-a-half miles away.

At the conclusion of the wargame, INDOPACOM J4 hosted an out-brief with the energy senior leaders. An additional out-brief will be held at the Pentagon later in October.