North American Aerospace Defense Command (NORAD) will conduct Operation NOBLE DEFENDER, an arctic air defense operation involving military aircraft and personnel from Canada and the United States, from March 14 to 17, 2022.
This recurring operation is designed to confirm the Canadian NORAD Region’s capabilities to respond to both aircraft and cruise missiles threatening North America. The operation will see Canadian CF-18 fighters operate from northern airfields to intercept aircraft role-playing as threats. Fighter aircraft will be supported by Royal Canadian Air Force and United States Air Force air-to-air refueller aircraft.
This operation is being staged in several northern locations, including Yellowknife, Whitehorse in Yukon, and Thule, Greenland. It is not held in response to any specific world event.
The strategic importance of the Arctic for Canada and the United States is indisputable and will only increase as sea ice diminishes and competition for resources in the region increases. Monitoring and control of North American airspace, including over the Arctic, remains a primary mission focus area for NORAD.