As temperatures continue to rise and drive extreme weather events that draw in militaries worldwide, the Center for Climate and Security (CCS) is launching a new effort to monitor military actions in response to climate hazards: the Military Responses to Climate Hazards (MiRCH) Tracker. Militaries are increasingly called upon to assist with wildfires, flood response, and other extreme weather events exacerbated by climate change. According to our tracker, since summer 2022, militaries in dozens of countries have responded nearly one hundred times to such hazards.
Ongoing climate change and weather patterns will only increase this demand, starting this summer with the expected arrival of the El Niño climate pattern, which scientists warn will result in significant temperature increases. This tracking effort will help analytic efforts to identify the temporal and geographic patterns in military deployments to climate hazards, the effectiveness of such deployments, and their implications for geopolitics, governance, and civil-military relations.
The tracker will be updated monthly. In addition to our own research at CCS, we are also calling for public input to identify incidents of military deployments in response to climate hazards. To do so, you can enter data into this Google Form. You can also download the up-to-date dataset on the MiRCH landing page.
Caveats: This project began as an informal tracking effort. The data is not comprehensive and relies heavily on English language press, and government social media posts. While we do not have confirmed climate change attribution for every hazard listed, authoritative climate science products such as the IPCC report indicate that events such as heatwaves, wildfires, floods, storms, and droughts are statistically more likely or intense in a warming world.
Please cite this project as The Center for Climate and Security’s Military Responses to Climate Hazards (MiRCH) Tracker.
Please direct media inquiries to Andrew Facini, CSR Communications Director