30 October 2017
For economic, strategic and operational reasons, militaries have begun to incorporate ‘green defence’ initiatives into their plans for future forces. As armed forces around the globe use more defence electronics and more complex systems, operating costs for the equipment upon which personnel depends have skyrocketed. Fuel convoys have become targets in expeditionary operations, also reducing troop safety. Nation-states dependent on energy imports worry about the autarky of their armed forces and their insatiable appetite for fuel – which has proven enormously expensive.
In recent years, biofuels have proven capable of powering supersonic flight for Navy aircraft, solar cells have kept unmanned aerial vehicles in the air and powered defence electronics on the ground, and hybrid electric drive has demonstrated cost savings for army-grade vehicles. Alternative energy resources and sustainable technologies, driven by research and development in commercial and military spheres alike, are increasingly recognised as useful to the armed forces.
… Zoe Stanley-Lockman is an Associate Fellow at the European Union Institute for Security Studies (EUISS). She was recently a Visiting Research Fellow with the Military Transformations Programme at the S. Rajaratnam School of International Studies (RSIS), Nanyang Technological University, Singapore.
IDSS / Online
Last updated on 07/11/2017