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NEWS | March 11, 2016

USS William P. Lawrence Wraps Up Oceania Maritime Security Initiative, Rejoins the Great Green Fleet

By Mass Communication Specialist 3rd Class Emiline L. M. Senn

WATERS TO THE EAST OF THE KOREAN PENINSULA – The guided-missile destroyer USS William P. Lawrence (DDG 110) rejoined the John C. Stennis Carrier Strike Group (JCSSG) March 11, upon completion of her Oceania Maritime Security Initiative (OMSI) tasking in the Western Pacific.

The JCSSG is the centerpiece of the U.S. Navy’s Great Green Fleet, a year-long initiative highlighting efforts to reshape energy use to increase operational capability and flexibility.

Despite her disaggregation from the JCSSG, Lawrence has continued to play her part as an integral asset of the Great Green Fleet. During the first two months of her deployment Lawrence used a blend of alternative biofuel and adopted additional fuel conservation procedures.

The result: sustained and independent operations at sea.

“By transforming energy use and awareness, we become a more flexible fighting force - whether in the waters of the Western Pacific or in the waters we sail closer to home,” said Rear Adm. Ron Boxall, commander, John C. Stennis Strike Group. “That flexibility becomes more operational time on station, more time to build partnerships, and more time to promote peace and stability in the region.”

During OMSI tasking, Lawrence burned an average of 20,159 gallons of fuel per day — 4.4 percent of her total fuel capacity which is 40 percent less than her average fuel burn rate in 2015.

“In conducting the OMSI mission, fuel conservation is an absolute must. Due to the geography of the region and the tyranny of distance, logistical support is in short supply over large swathes of the Pacific, especially for ships operating alone,” stated Lt. Quinn Matt, chief engineer aboard Lawrence. “By adhering to our fuel conservation measures, we were able to meet all our mission requirements and prolong operational endurance.”

In support of the OMSI mission, an embarked law enforcement detachment from U.S. Coast Guard Tactical Law Enforcement Team South worked with Lawrence’s Visit, Board, Search and Seizure (VBSS) team and embarked Air Department from Helicopter Maritime Strike Squadron (HSM) 71. Together, they conducted eight boardings in support of U.S. and Pacific Island Nations (PIN) fisheries laws.

“OMSI was a great opportunity to engage with PIN in an enhanced capacity and to continue building our relationships and partnerships in the region,” stated Cmdr. Walter C. Mainor, commanding officer. “It was a privilege to be Third Fleet’s OMSI platform and operate forward in the region.”

OMSI is a Secretary of Defense program leveraging Department of Defense assets transiting the region to increase the Coast Guard’s maritime domain awareness, ultimately supporting its maritime law enforcement operations in Oceania.

Lawrence now turns her attention to reintegrating with the JCSSG, which has been conducting routine operations in the 7th Fleet area of operations with USS John C. Stennis (CVN 74), guided-missile cruiser USS Mobile Bay (CG 53), the guided-missile destroyers USS Stockdale (DDG 106), and USS Chung Hoon (DDG 93).

Providing a ready force supporting security and stability in the Indo-Asia Pacific, Lawrence is operating as part of the John C. Stennis Strike Group and Great Green Fleet on a regularly scheduled 7th Fleet deployment.