Environment of Warfare
Strategic, tactical, and technological changes in military operations have occurred over the past decades, but with no equivalent change in environmental infrastructure design or operation of forward operating bases (FOBs). As recent evaluations of base camp operations indicate, the planning, design, and functionality of base camps are still done on an ad hoc basis (Mosher et al. 2008). In some ways, the U.S. Army has lost skills it once had. The primary example is field sanitation, as today's Army relies on contractor-provided support such as "port-a-potties" and environmentally controlled and/or containerized housing. If contractor support is not available, the state of the art includes "burn-out latrines," field expedient showers, and open pit burning for solid waste. The reliance on local manpower and contractors also presents a security risk and a negative impact to the local population as well. These approaches have not changed greatly since the Civil War and do not apply 21st-century technologies or capabilities, thus posing a direct threat to troops' health and well-being. In this paper, we summarize current conditions and technological approaches commonly employed at FOBs and then highlight the ongoing efforts to improve these outdated practices and cast a light on the envisioned future environmental infrastructure at FOBs.
T. H. Canter et al., "Environment of Warfare," Journal of Environmental Engineering, vol. 137, no. 7, pp. 525-530, American Society of Civil Engineers (ASCE), Jul 2011.
The definitive version is available at https://doi.org/10.1061/(ASCE)EE.1943-7870.0000362
Civil, Architectural and Environmental Engineering
Keywords and Phrases
Drinking water; Environmental planning; Site investigation; Site selection; Solid waste; Technological change; Waste disposal
International Standard Serial Number (ISSN)
Article - Journal
© 2011 American Society of Civil Engineers (ASCE), All rights reserved.