Earlier this year, the Pentagon released a report on which mission-critical installations faced the most risk due to extreme weather events, including floods, drought and wind. That list generated push back from Congress, which sought further clarity on the issue.
On Tuesday, Rep. Jim Langevin, D-R.I., released the Pentagon’s updated list, which ranks each service’s most at-risk installations. For the Air Force, it’s Hill Air Force Base in Utah. DoD found Hill to be at risk of flooding, desertification, wildfires and drought.
Langevin said he still questions how DoD calculated that risk. For example, the overall list does not name any Marine Corps installations, such as Camp Pendleton in California, which has faced wildfire threat, or Camp Lejeune, which was badly damaged by Hurricane Florence last year.
In its letter to Langevin, DoD said the bases were selected by the importance of their operational roles. In addition, while DoD said it was a “top 10 list” for each service, there were more than 10 bases named for each service.
“The revised report continues to leave off overseas bases, and it fails to include massive military installations like Camp Lejeune. Most importantly, it continues to lack any assessment of the funds Congress will need to appropriate to mitigate the ever increasing risks to our service members,” Langevin said.
DoD’s revised list comes as Air Force made an urgent request Wednesday for supplemental funding for the severe storm damage it has faced in the last few months.
The Air Force needs $4.9 billion to rebuild Hurricane Michael-ravaged Tyndall Air Force Base in Florida and repair the recently flooded Offutt Air Force Base in Nebraska, Secretary Heather Wilson said Wednesday.
Neither Offutt nor Tyndall made the Pentagon’s top at-risk bases. Here’s DoD’s list of the top Air Force bases most at risk to flooding, drought, wildfires or desertification:
- Hill Air Force Base, Utah
- Beale Air Force Base, California
- Vandenberg Air Force Base, California
- Greeley Air National Guard Station, Colorado
- Eglin Air Force Base, Florida
- Patrick Air Force Base, Florida
- Joint Base Andrews, Maryland
- Malmstrom Air Force Base, Montana
- Tinker Air Force Base, Oklahoma
- Shaw Air Force Base, South Carolina
- Joint Base San Antonio, Texas
Tara Copp is the Pentagon Bureau Chief for Military Times and author of the award-winning military nonfiction "The Warbird: Three Heroes. Two Wars. One Story."