The military can play amid a positive role among wider efforts to alleviate the climate crisis, Defence Minister Charalambos Petrides told a climate change and security conference on Monday.
Petrides noted that the military has a history of spearheading breakthroughs in science through its research and development policies. Such innovation could also transform technology to assist in combating the climate crisis, he said.
Speaking at the Zenon Coordination Centre in Larnaca, the minister said the EU is actively pursuing the implementation of its climate change and defence roadmap.
He explained how the military is a key employer and works with core components of the state, from land to energy and consequently has an impact on the environment.
Petrides highlighted the importance of such a major state institution having a “solid environmental and energy policy.”
He further stated that addressing issues such as energy consumption, renewable energy and greater efficiency will contribute to Cyprus meeting its energy targets for 2030.
Speaking at the same conference chief executive of the European Defence Agency Jiri Sedivy said that energy is a key enabler of military operations, meaning that improved efficiency helps the armed forces save considerable amounts of money that can then be invested in other areas.
For the defence sector, the transition away from fossil fuels to sustainable energy models should be the key objective, especially in battlefields where supply lines are expensive and dangerous to maintain, he said.
He also emphasised that more renewables and alternative fuels mean less dependency on non-EU energy sources, which in turn increases resilience, energy strategic autonomy and operational efficiency.