AFI 32-7001, ENVIRONMENTAL QUALITY AND OTHER ASSET MANAGEMENT
DIRECTIVES AND INSTRUCTIONS
MAJOR PAT CARLEY, P.E.
MR. TOM WELCH, P.E.
HEADQUARTERS AIR FORCE
ENVIRONMENTAL QUALITY BRANCH
Asset Management is a systematic and integrated practice through which the Air Force (AF) optimally
manages its natural and built assets and their associated performance, risk, and expenditures over the
lifecycle to a level of service to support missions and organizational goals. Breaking down that definition,
we can see that:
Systematic and integrated – implies disciplined and standardized process
Practices – resources, processes, technologies
Optimally – qualitatively and quantitatively balance benefits, costs, and risks to justify the best
Manage – dynamically leverage assets, not focused on static “entitlement”
Natural assets – such as environmental, energy, permits and credits, mineral rights, and air space
Built assets – facilities and real property
Lifecycle - plan, acquire, sustain, manage (leverage), operate, and divest
Level of Service – AF standard measures of quality
The system provides the leadership with a decision-making tool that supplies information to take action on
decisions such as how and when to acquire, maintain, operate, rehabilitate, and dispose of or replace assets.
The Air Force is in the process of publishing multiple directives and instructions that will provide the
foundation for Asset Management. Draft AFI 32-7001 (Environmental Quality Program), the
Environmental Management System (EMS) Handbook, Natural Infrastructure Assessment (NIA) Guide,
and the integration of EMS and Natural Infrastructure Management (NIM) programs all will support Asset
Management within the Air Force.
This instruction implements Air Force policy directive (AFPD) 32-70, Environmental Quality, and AFPD
90-8, Environment, Safety, and Occupational Health by establishing the framework for an Environmental
Management System (EMS) at Headquarters, United States Air Force (HQ USAF), major commands
(MAJCOM), and at installations. The purpose of the Air Force Environmental Quality (EQ) program is to
enhance mission capability by maximizing Natural Infrastructure (NI) capacity while implementing the
EMS and maintaining full compliance with all statutory requirements.
As the Air Force EQ program continues to mature, the focus broadens beyond an environmental media
and/or statutory and regulatory requirements based program to sustaining mission capability today and into
the future. The Air Force has implemented Natural Infrastructure Management (NIM), which introduces an
asset management approach to NI assets (e.g. air & space, frequency spectrum, land, etc.) and focuses
management actions toward one common goal – mission sustainment. Enhancing the existing compliance
focused EQ program with NI and EMS principles will allow the Air Force to sustain, restore, and
modernize its mission capability, achieve compliance with federal, state, and local regulations, manage NI,
and restore contaminated sites while reducing operating costs and mission impacts.
The Air Force EMS follows a Plan – Do – Check – Act cycle that provides continuous program
management and project execution improvement. The EMS moves continually through this cycle, fine-
tuning its management of those areas of the organization’s operations that may significantly affect the
environment. This “continuous improvement cycle” is a core tenet of the management system because it
builds adaptability into the structure to support the dynamic nature of the installation’s operations.
Environmental Management System (EMS) Handbook
An EMS is part of an overall management system that includes policy development, organizational
structure, planning activities, responsibilities, practices, procedures, processes, and resources for
developing, implementing, achieving, reviewing, and maintaining the environmental program and
achieving environmental goals. An EMS provides a structured framework for:
Identifying and evaluating environmental risk;
Organizing and managing environmental responsibilities;
Evaluating the quality of the environment and determining how it is affected by the organizational
Conducting a self-evaluation of the effectiveness of the EMS in achieving desired levels of
While creating tenets of its EMS, the Air Force evaluated the potential opportunities and advantages of the
two most broadly used environmental management system models – the internationally recognized ISO
14001 and the EPA-developed Code of Environmental Management Principles (CEMP). The tailored Air
Force EMS model that resulted from this evaluation follows a Plan – Do – Check – Act (PDCA) cycle that
provides for continuous program and project execution improvement. While the model closely aligns with
the structure and framework of the ISO 14001 model and contains the rigor of the internationally proven
standard, it also contains a degree of flexibility to account for unique and militarily significant
The EMS Handbook, which is in draft form, will provide guidance on the establishment and operation of an
environmental management system. Examples include:
Establishment of a Cross Functional Team (CFT)
Details on the stages of the EMS
Structure and responsibilities
Document management and control
Monitoring and measurement
Conducting the assessment
The successful implementation of an installation-wide EMS requires support from all functional areas of
the installation. An EMS cannot, and should not, be created and implemented by the Civil Engineer’s
Environmental Flight alone, as environmental management responsibility and accountability is shared by
all installation organizations. Coordination of the required support to implement the EMS will be
accomplished through the formation of an installation-wide EMS cross-functional team (CFT). The EMS
Coordinator, appointed by the installation commander, will serve as the CFT Team Leader.
Natural Infrastructure Assessment (NIA) Guide
In order to be mission ready at the installation and range level, the Air Force needs an adequate supply of
air & space, land, and water (i.e., Natural Infrastructure) to test, train, and perform its varied missions.
While the Air Force seeks to maintain adequate supplies of these resources, NI is, in some locations,
degraded or denied due to environmental and other use restrictions. In turn, the degradation or denial of air
& space, land, and water resources due to the cumulative impact of these restrictions can result in
diminished operations and mission impact. These situations are where workarounds and additional
business costs begin to emerge.
The Natural Infrastructure Assessment (NIA) is another tool in the installation’s kit to manage and provide
trend analysis of encroachment, denial, or other adverse activities that are affecting the installation or Tier 1
ranges. The assessment should not be considered a scorecard or grade for the installation; this tool is only
intended to provide a series of indicators to assist senior leaders with management decisions regarding the
sustainment, restoration, and modernization of NI assets to support mission requirements.
The NIA uses numerous measures to quantify the adequacy of NI to support mission needs. In general,
measures compare required (or allotted) resource quantities to available resource quantities. The
information generated provides a context for understanding what kinds of activities occur, their relationship
to the mission, and the importance of the infrastructure and those Natural Infrastructure assets to the local
Furthermore, the NIA provides a series of indicators that illustrate the effects of encroachment and other
restrictions on use as well as the relative degree of availability of each NI asset. These NI ratings and
indicators should be considered by senior leaders, at all levels, in making management decisions regarding
the sustainment, restoration, and modernization of NI assets to support mission requirements within the
existing planning, programming and budgeting system.
EMS and NIM Implementation
Check NI to determine if it meets operational capacity: The first step is conducting the NIA. Just as an
Environmental, Safety and Occupational Health Compliance Assessment and Management Program
(ESOHCAMP) assesses the health of the environmental compliance program, the NIA evaluates the health
of the NI to meet mission requirements. Once NI is assessed, opportunities for growth and encroachments
into the NI are quantified. By the end of FY08, major Air Force installations should have completed this
Management Review: After completing the assessment, results of the NIA should be presented to senior
leadership. Additionally, the data must be reviewed annually. This can be done using the Facilities board,
Environmental, Safety and Occupational Health Council (ESOHC), or other existing forum. Installation
leadership should use the NIA to make decisions on how to allocate scarce resources. On a MAJCOM or
AF macro level, NIA results could influence future basing decisions.
Incorporate NIM into Policies: The installation Environmental Policy Statement is the driver for
implementing and improving the installation’s EMS so that an installation can maintain and improve its
environmental performance. Moreover, other Wing level policies cover environmental issues. All of these
polices should be reviewed and updated to ensure NI is included. Just as an installation’s current EMS
policy should reflect a commitment to compliance with all applicable federal, state, and local laws and
provide foresight for continual improvement, it should also have a broader focus to include NIM. The
policy statement should include a commitment to sustaining the NI in addition to maintaining compliance
and preventing pollution. Once the installation commits to sustaining, restoring, and modernizing the NI to
ensure operational capability, steps should be put in place to achieve that commitment.
Using NIM Data in the Planning: Constrained or encroached resources are identified by NIAs
(conducted during the Checking and Corrective Actions Phase) and used as part of a risk ranking
methodology, such as aspect/impact identification. For those areas with the highest risk, objectives and
targets are set and action plans developed to mitigate risk or NI degradation. Objectives and targets (e.g.,
creation of a conservation easement, procurement of emission reduction credits, or environmental
restoration actions to increase the number of on-base developable acres) are then carried forward into the
planning, programming, and budgeting process for funding and execution. This entire risk management
process is underpinned by measures of merit and funding guidelines that allow NI managers to fund a wide
variety of valid projects that meet regulatory compliance, encroachment prevention, and mission-driven
Implementation and Operation Phase: Installations reduce risk and prevent degradation through actions
and investments that support operational and regulatory requirements. The actions may include such things
as clearly defined roles and responsibilities; providing job-specific training; developing or updating written
procedures to reduce the potential for environmental impact; stipulating operating criteria to support current
and emerging operational requirements; ensuring the most current versions of the necessary plans,
checklists and other documents are available when needed, where they are needed; increasing
communication with local planning authorities and local community officials; and managing permits as
assets, not liabilities. Sustaining, restoring, and modernizing the resource base becomes part of the day-to-
Checking and Corrective Action Phase: ESOHCAMPs now include both environmental compliance and
EMS conformance assessments. Corrective Actions must be developed and executed to sustain, restore,
and modernize existing Resource Base as well as maintain compliance and improve EMS conformance.
Performance measures should be tracked overtime to keep the pulse of programs. Any resource
deficiencies should be identified and quantified in order to obtain adequate funding through the Planning,
Programming, Budget, and Execution (PPBE) process.
The opinions and conclusions in this paper are the author’s alone and do not necessarily reflect those of
the United States Air Force or the Federal Government.
Patrick J. Carley, Maj, USAF, P.E.
Activity Manager (Environmental Services)
Commercial: (703) 604-3626 DSN: 664
Booz Allen Hamilton
5800 Lake Write Drive, Suite 300
Norfolk, VA 23502
Commercial: (757) 893-6146