Home » News & Analysis » Video: Eisenhower Carrier Strike Group Enters Mediterranean, Will Continue Great Green Fleet Ops


Video: Eisenhower Carrier Strike Group Enters Mediterranean, Will Continue Great Green Fleet Ops

The aircraft carrier USS Dwight D. Eisenhower (CVN 69) transits through the Strait of Gibraltar into the Mediterranean Sea on June 13, 2016. US Navy photo.

The aircraft carrier USS Dwight D. Eisenhower (CVN 69) transits through the Strait of Gibraltar into the Mediterranean Sea on June 13, 2016. US Navy photo.

The Dwight D. Eisenhower Carrier Strike Group passed through the Strait of Gibraltar and into the Mediterranean Sea yesterday, officially putting two aircraft carriers in the Med for simultaneous operations for the first time since sequestration limited funding for deployments.

The Ike CSG continues to perform Great Green Fleet operations, as it has since entering U.S. 6th Fleet on June 8. As part of the GGF deployment, Ike and its associated ships will conduct a multi-day passing exercise with the Italian navy’s Flotta Verde (Green Fleet), during which an Italian oiler will refuel Ike CSG ships with an advanced alternative fuel, according to a U.S. Navy statement.

“Ike CSG ships are the centerpiece of the Great Green Fleet initiative, which emphasizes use of energy conservation measures as a key combat enabler to allow ships to go farther, stay longer and deliver more firepower,” according to the statement.

The Harry S. Truman CSG, on the other hand, continues its strike mission against ISIS targets from the Mediterranean.

The aircraft carrier USS Dwight D. Eisenhower (CVN 69) transits through the Strait of Gibraltar into the Mediterranean Sea on June 13, 2016. US Navy photo.

The aircraft carrier USS Dwight D. Eisenhower (CVN 69) transits through the Strait of Gibraltar into the Mediterranean Sea on June 13, 2016. US Navy photo.

The aircraft carrier USS Dwight D. Eisenhower (CVN 69) transits through the Strait of Gibraltar into the Mediterranean Sea on June 13, 2016. US Navy photo.

The aircraft carrier USS Dwight D. Eisenhower (CVN 69) transits through the Strait of Gibraltar into the Mediterranean Sea on June 13, 2016. US Navy photo.

The Dwight D. Eisenhower Carrier Strike Group transits through the Strait of Gibraltar into the Mediterranean Sea on June 13, 2016. US Navy photo.

The Dwight D. Eisenhower Carrier Strike Group transits through the Strait of Gibraltar into the Mediterranean Sea on June 13, 2016. US Navy photo.

Sailors from the crash and salvage team stow fire hoses on the flight deck of the aircraft carrier USS Dwight D. Eisenhower (CVN 69) during transit through the Strait of Gibraltar into the Mediterranean Sea on June 13, 2016. US Navy photo.

Sailors from the crash and salvage team stow fire hoses on the flight deck of the aircraft carrier USS Dwight D. Eisenhower (CVN 69) during transit through the Strait of Gibraltar into the Mediterranean Sea on June 13, 2016. US Navy photo.

The aircraft carrier USS Dwight D. Eisenhower (CVN 69) transits through the Strait of Gibraltar into the Mediterranean Sea on June 13, 2016. US Navy photo.

The aircraft carrier USS Dwight D. Eisenhower (CVN 69) transits through the Strait of Gibraltar into the Mediterranean Sea on June 13, 2016. US Navy photo.

  • Curtis Conway

    “…the Great Green Fleet initiative, which emphasizes use of energy conservation measures as a key combat enabler…”

    When one reads these words it conjures up great savings of money and resources. If one considered the cost per gallon of fuel used by the Great Green Fleet, there is nothing green about it, except the green-backs that paid the greater price for that Green Fuel used predominantly by turbine engines.

  • Eric Arllen

    Great Green Fleece – Yeah, that’s a far more accurate descriptor.

  • RobM1981

    I’m glad that this administration has us focused on the critical, like “whether the fleet can use what passes for ‘green’ fuel.”

    When will they convert the hangars into bio-domes, so that the crew can grow their own food? Remember, the destroyers have hangars, too, so this can be a fleet-wide initiative. We can leave the aircraft outside – they were designed to get wet, anyhow, right?

  • Donald Carey

    When brass corrodes, it turns green. Perhaps the name of this “fleet” reflects the amount of corrosion present in the Navy’s top brass.

  • 02144pomroy

    American taxpayers being fleeced again. What a joke. I hope Trump turns the Pentagon upside down. These guys make me sick. Agree to anything to keep that pension and big paying job in the “complex” after retirement. We have ceased in being a serious nation.

  • Cl1ffClav3n

    Now the U.S. Navy has fully regressed from a 50/50 biofuel blend in 2012 to a 10% blend earlier this year to a 5.5% blend now from Eni in Italy. A 5% blend should not even be called biofuel.

    The U.S. Navy paid $2.26/gal for this fuel. That is a premium of 66 cent/gal over the current price for marine diesel fuel in Genoa at $1.60/gal ($500/tonne). That premium only purchased 5.5% of a gallon of biofuel. The math for each blended gallon works out to be $1.51 for the 94.5% that is fossil fuel and $0.75 for the 5.5% that is biofuel. That means the biofuel portion cost $13.64/gal — a very expensive additive. The failure of the biofuel price to become competitive even after more than a decade of mandates and subsidies is why the blending fractions are falling instead of rising. This is an inescapable consequence of the low EROI of biofuel and its critical dependence upon fossil fuels for cultivation and harvesting and processing of the feedstoock.

    The Navy has also regressed in its chosen feedstock, from advanced algae in 2012, to beef fat earlier this year, now to palm oil, a first-generation biofuel. Palm oil biodiesel is recognized by the bulk of Europe and by informed environmentalists everywhere as the absolute worst biofuel, as it triples GHG emissions over fossil fuels (www.transportenvironment[dot]org/press/biodiesel’s-impact-emissions-extra-12m-cars-our-roads-latest-figures-show ). This is because of massive land use change impacts and environmental damage including peat land draining and deforestation and destruction of natural biomes and displacement of food crops.

    This Italian blendstock is even worse for polluting and greenhouse gas emissions than regular palm biodiesel because, to be compatible with U.S. Navy engines, the fatty acids and methylated esters present in biodiesel must be upgraded to “drop-in” quality pure hydrocarbons via a complex, expensive, and dirty hydrotreatment process that consumes massive amounts of natural gas and emits even greater amounts of CO2. In the final analysis, it is likely ten times worse than fossil fuel in lifecycle GHG emissions.

    The U.S. Navy biofuels obsession is hurting the climate, food security, biodiversity, and international stability. It is also fleecing the taxpayers by paying ludicrous prices for meaningless quantities of product. The U.S. Navy and EPA and federal government need to stop denying the proven net harm to the climate and environment being done by biofuels, and to stop pretending, against all evidence, that they are clean and green and renewable.