To keep installations resilient, the Pentagon needs to focus on infrastructure outside the fence, John Conger wrote in a Defense One article encouraging Congress to fund the Defense Community Infrastructure Program (DCIP). The program would support community resiliency efforts against threats such as climate change.
“[D]efense communities have become indispensable to the installations they surround, providing electricity, water and wastewater services, communications nodes, transportation infrastructure, housing for the majority of military personnel, the civilian workforce, education for military children, specialized medical capability, and emergency response,” Conger wrote. “[M]ost bases would not be able to function for long without the services provided by neighboring communities.”
Congress authorized DCIP last year but has not funded it. DCIP is included in the defense policy bill that’s currently stalled on Capitol Hill. That bill also calls for a review of vulnerabilities at each installation.
“These assessments must also note each base’s dependence on the infrastructure and resources outside its gates,” Conger wrote.
Air Force photo of Joint Base Langley Eustis, Va., by Airman 1st Class Sarah Dowe