The U.S. Navy and Marine Corps conduct a large-scale amphibious training exercise in Alaska against the background of rising of Russian military activity in the Arctic region.
The increased rate of melting sea ice, which has created new trade routes through the region and increased accessibility to the vast resources it contains has exacerbated the instability and tension in the Arctic region.
Approximately 3,000 U.S. Navy and Marine Corps personnel will participate in Arctic Expeditionary Capabilities Exercise (AECE) 2019 in areas of the Aleutian Islands, Southcentral Alaska and Southern California from Sept. 1-28, according to a recent service news release.
AECE is one in a series of U.S. Indo-Pacific Command exercises in 2019 that prepares joint forces to respond to crises in the Indo-Pacific. AECE will specifically test joint expeditionary force logistical transfer capabilities in the Arctic environment, including wet logistics over the shore, expeditionary mine countermeasures, mobile diving and salvage and an offshore petroleum discharge system.
Navy and Marine Corps participants will conduct operational and tactical actions to validate the Littoral Operations in a Contested Environment (LOCE) and the Expeditionary Advanced Base Operations (EABO) concepts.
Major participating units include U.S. Pacific Fleet, Marine Corps Forces Pacific, U.S. 3rd Fleet, Expeditionary Strike Group (ESG) 3, and I Marine Expeditionary Force. Afloat units include USS Somerset (LPD 25) and USS Comstock (LSD 45). Ashore units include Explosive Ordnance Disposal Group 1, Explosive Ordnance Disposal Expeditionary Support Unit 1, Explosive Ordnance Disposal Mobile Unit 1, Explosive Ordnance Disposal Mobile Unit 3, and Mobile Diving and Salvage Unit 1.
U.S. 3rd Fleet leads naval forces in the Indo-Pacific and provides the realistic, relevant training necessary for an effective global Navy. U.S. 3rd Fleet works constantly with U.S. 7th Fleet to complement one another and provide commanders capable, ready assets across the spectrum of military operations in the Pacific.