Climate change has a huge impact on how we function. They touch most of our activities. We have written about how they affect agriculture or the IT industry in earlier issues of Water Matters.

Defense sector

The defense sector is no different. This issue has been studied by the Joint Research Center at the EC(JRC). In their report, they pointed out:

“Defense resources, capabilities and operations are also threatened by climate phenomena such as severe flooding, storms and high or low temperatures. Such impacts may damage or destroy military assets or render them unusable under certain operational conditions, cause health and safety risks to military personnel, or lead to higher costs for inspection, maintenance, repair and overhaul of infrastructure. The impact of climate change and environmental degradation on defense is expected to increase in the future.”

On the other hand, as the JRC points out, the defense sector contributes to climate change because it relies on the direct and indirect use of fossil fuels, which translates into a high carbon footprint. It was emphasized that while the defense sector needs to increase its resilience to climate change, it is necessary to reduce its carbon footprint at the same time. JRC writes that “The defense sector has recognized the limitations of using fossil fuels and is stepping up efforts to introduce more sustainable energy choices, in line with the goals of the European Green Deal.”

However, it should be emphasized that the defense sector alone will not respond to climate change. This is because it depends on the resources and structure of the country’s energy production. JRC’s report points to the lack of a coherent strategic approach to decarbonizing the defense industry. At the same time, recommendations for change were made, focusing on the need to green and increase resilience to climate change in the operational dimension.

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