Navy works with state to Improve environment

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. - The Navy Compliance Partnering Team is working with military and state agencies to improve environmental compliance and sustainability. The team met Thursday to continue their effort to impact Florida's environment in a collaboration to improve communication and trust.

After participating in the Naval Air Station Annual Shoreline Cleanup, the team discussed upcoming changes in Florida tank regulations, reducing hazardous waste processing times, wastewater management and Title V air pollution permit applications.

"The partnership between the Navy and the regulatory agencies is a win-win situation because the Navy accomplishes its mission, while being a good steward of the environment and good neighbor to surrounding communities," said Capt. Roy Undersander, commanding officer of NAS Jacksonville.

This partnership has led to many projects and solutions. One example is a $4.4 million wastewater reuse expansion project to eliminate all wastewater discharge -- 315 million gallons per year --- to the St. Johns River. The project also reduced groundwater withdrawal by 66 million gallons per year.

The Navy Compliance Partnering Team is comprised of representatives from Naval Air Station Jacksonville, Naval Station Mayport, Fleet Readiness Center Southeast, Naval Facilities Engineering Command Southeast, the St. Johns River Water Management District, and the City of Jacksonville and Department of Environmental Protection's Northeast District.

"We are proud of our special partnership with the Navy," said Greg Strong, director of DEP's Northeast District. "By working together to find solutions, we can accomplish much more and ensure a higher level of environmental protection."

The Navy Compliance Partnering Team meets quarterly to develop and maintain a proactive partnership that identifies and implements innovative solutions to improve compliance, protect public health and improve Florida's environment.