The Secretary of the Navy (SECNAV) will present USS Harry
S. Truman (CVN 75) with the Secretary of the Navy Environment Quality Award for fiscal year 2005 May 3.
The CNO Environment Award and SECNAV award are presented to ships Navywide annually that exemplify environmental stewardship.
“Truman was chosen along with USS George Washington
and USS John C. Stennis for the Chief of Naval Operations Environmental Quality Award,” said Lt. Mike Overton, Truman’s afloat environmental protection coordinator. “Out of these three ships we were chosen for the Secretary of the Navy Award.”
“Basically the award is for how the ship puts forth effort to maintain environmental quality (when it comes to) the correct storage, disposal and handling of HAZMAT,” said Overton.
The CNO Environmental Readiness Director, Rear Adm. James A. Symonds, congratulated the winners of the award.
"I am proud that you are working hard to achieve superior environmental stewardship while executing our primary mission of national defense," he said. "Your work has added to Navy's ever-growing record of accomplishments, proving yet again that Navy's environmental programs are among the finest in the world."
All departments on board Truman, especially Supply, Engineering and Safety, contributed to this honor. Supply Department helps to maintain the separation of trash during meal hours and incinerates their own trash from the galleys. Engineering Department is responsible for the collection, holding and transfer sewage system, the incinerator and trash.
Though these departments play a huge part, winning this award also takes the effort of the entire crew. The Truman/Carrier Air Wing (CVW)3 team played a major part by separating their trash and ensuring HAZMAT (hazardous material) was disposed of properly.
“It is very important to train our Sailors,” said Overton. “Taking extra steps, having (standard operating procedures) and updated directives to instruct Sailors, especially a spill plan, can be a great help.”
Truman has never suffered an environmental incident since its commissioning in 1998.
“With the handling of so much fuel and waste, not having an environmental incident during deployment is amazing,” said Overton. He added that Truman’s concern of the environment includes avoiding surfaced marine life when ever possible out at sea.
Overton has been aboard Truman for just under a year and couldn’t be prouder to serve with such a prestigious team.
“Winning this award makes me proud to serve with a crew that has an awareness of the environment,” said Overton. “As we progress, we realize the damage we do and any way we can lessen the damage is a success.”
Over the past year Truman has won the Capt. Edward F. Ney Award, Jig Dog Ramage Award, Battle ‘E,' Humanitarian Service Medal, Dorie P. Miller Award and the Environmental Quality Award.
Truman is currently undergoing a Dry-docked Planned Incremental Availability at Norfolk Naval Shipyard.
By Journalist 2nd Class (SW/AW) Kat Smith, USS Harry S. Truman Public Affairs