BY SKY M. LARON, DIRECTOR OF CORPORATE COMMUNICATIONS NAVSUP FLEET LOGISTICS CENTER YOKOSUKA
U.S. Forces Japan (USFJ) and Japanese Maritime Self Defense Force (JMSDF) Japan Joint Staff Logistics (J4) leaders toured multiple Naval Supply Systems Command (NAVSUP) Fleet Logistics Center (FLC) Yokosuka facilities in Yokosuka, Japan Jul. 9.
“The purpose of the visit was to provide a forum for bilateral professional development and mutual understanding of logistics issues between senior logisticians on the Japan Joint Staff J4 and USFJ J4,” said Victor Madaris, USFJ sub-area petroleum officer, Japan.
As part of the bilateral engagement, the NAVSUP FLC Yokosuka, Commanding Officer, U.S. Navy Capt. Ray Bichard, provided a command overview to Rear Adm. Masatomi Dairiki, Japan Joint staff director of logistics and Col. Christopher Michelsen, USFJ director of logistics and installations, regarding the diverse logistics mission of his command as well as specifically detailing bulk fuel capacities and capability in the region, giving both senior leaders a better understanding of the operational footprint.
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Capt. Ray Bichard (far-left), NAVSUP FLC Yokosuka, commanding officer, leads a tour of multiple NAVSUP FLC Yokosuka facilities for U.S. Forces Japan and Japanese Maritime Self Defense Force
Japan Joint Staff Logistics (J4) leaders while aboard the small craft HAKO-8 (25’Boston Whaler) enroute to the island of Azuma located within Tokyo Bay.
As the largest regional fuel operation, NAVSUP FLC Yokosuka operates eight deep water fuel terminals and one airfield fuel terminal while storing and delivering 45 percent of all U.S. Navy fuel in the Asia Pacific region.
From a DoD perspective, the NAVSUP FLC Yokosuka fuels department has a bulk petroleum inventory of nearly 600 million gallons, which is an astounding 10 percent of DoD’s total global bulk petroleum inventory.
NAVSUP FLC Yokosuka partners with Defense Logistics Agency Energy to store and distribute this fuel by vessel, rail and truck throughout mainland Japan and the entire Asia Pacific region.
“The NAVSUP FLC Yokosuka fuel facilities are so large,” said Dairiki. “It is really fantastic,” he said, adding that the JMSDF could build these types of large facilities if space was not so limited in Japan.
“The issue really becomes the difficulty in identifying real-estate,” said Dairiki.
In addition to the fuel facility tour the logistics leaders from both nations viewed multiple warehouse spaces and ship repair facilities where NAVSUP FLC Yokosuka Sailors are positioned in support of the 7th Fleet.
Both Japan and U.S. logistics leaders thanked the Sailors and civilian personnel for their informative tour and continued on their journey across the Kanto Plain in central Japan, visiting other DoD facilities that help provide logistics support to the Joint warfighter on a daily basis.