A $91.3 million contract was awarded to Virginia-based infotech consulting firm Booz Allen Hamilton by the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (USACE) for assistance in improving security and resilience in energy infrastructure. Booz Allen beat two other bids on the cost-plus-fixed-fee and firm-fixed-price contracts offered by USACE. The project is estimated to take five years to complete.
Though this project is still in its initial stages, the idea of energy resilience has long been of critical importance for the Department of Defense, with recent crises making the need for this project even more immediate. Since 2018, the Air Force has partnered with USACE and contractors like Booz Allen to repair bases damaged by hurricanes as well as modernize the infrastructure of at least 40 more bases. Natural disasters such as hurricanes are likely to become more severe in the future due to climatic changes, a predicament that USACE science and innovation advisor Lance Marrano argued can be addressed by bringing private-sector innovators in on public-sector technologies and resources.
Indeed, enhancing the resilience of the nation’s infrastructure has occupied an increasingly large portion of USACE’s attention in the last half-decade. In the wake of Hurricane Katrina and other such emergencies, USACE launched a Resilience Initiative in 2016 to help modernize and repair existing infrastructure for the military as well as the private sector. In 2017, the DOD organization cited an increasing gap between emerging threats to infrastructure and field offices’ ability to recognize and respond to these crises. The work of contractors such as Booz Allen has played a significant role in addressing this gap.
The partnership is hardly the first struck with Booz Allen by the Corps of Engineers or the military at large. In spring of this year, Booz Allen was contracted to develop relevant data infrastructure for the Army Futures Command’s Command, Control, Computers, Communications, Cyber, Intelligence, Surveillance and Reconnaissance Center. Previously, Booz Allen announced their participation in a ten-year $200 million contract to provide tech support for a joint testing and evaluation (JT&E) program for the Department of Defense.