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Exercise TALISMAN SABRE 2015 is a biennial combined Australian and United States (US) training activity, designed to train our respective military forces in planning and conducting Combined Task Force operations to improve the combat readiness and interoperability between our respective forces. This exercise is a major undertaking that reflects the closeness of our alliance and the strength of the ongoing military-military relationship.

What is Exercise Talisman Sabre?

The Talisman Sabre series of exercises is a major Australian and United States military training exercise focused on the planning and conduct of mid-intensity “high end” warfighting. This will be the sixth time the Exercise has been conducted and will involve up to 30,000 Australian and US defence personnel.

TS15 will incorporate force preparation activities, Special Forces activities, amphibious landings, parachuting, land force manoeuvre, urban operations, air operations, maritime operations and the coordinated firing of live ammunition and explosive ordnance from small arms, artillery, naval vessels and aircraft.

Where will TS15 take place?

This year marks the first time Exercise Talisman Sabre has run simultaneously within the Shoalwater Bay Training Area, near Rockhampton in Central Queensland and at Fog Bay, south west of Darwin. The Australian Army will be staging Exercise Hamel in conjunction with TS15 at Shoalwater Bay using Talisman Sabre themes and scenarios.

When is it being held?

TS15 is scheduled to take place early to mid-July 2015. The Exercise itself will take place over approximately 20 days, with Force preparation and demobilisation activities carried out in the weeks leading up to and after the Exercise.

How are the communities being involved?

Defence has been working closely with the communities of Darwin and Fog Bay for more than a year. The Rockhampton community is more used to hosting defence activity but they too are being consulted, particularly in relation to environmental safeguards which will be put in place.

Defence is taking all necessary steps to safeguard the environment during Talisman Sabre 15. The ADF protects endangered species and marine mammals through a comprehensive framework of risk mitigation procedures developed after careful analysis of all Defence maritime activities.

Where can I find more on Defence’s efforts to safeguard the environment during this activity?

Public submissions have now closed but interested community members are encouraged to view the draft Public Environment Report.

Defence is proud of its environmental management record throughout past exercises and the day-to-day management of all its training sites, which has been demonstrated through the collection of key environmental data.

How is TALISMAN SABER 2015 being environmentally assessed?

A draft Public Environment Report has been prepared by consultants to Defence, Aurecon, to inform Defence, the Australian public and relevant stakeholders of potential environmental and heritage issues relating to the conduct of TALISMAN SABER 13.

All interested community members are encouraged to view the draft Public Environment Report and provide feedback during the public consultation period from 24 September to 26 October 2012. Copies of the draft report as well as supporting fact sheets can be downloaded from http://www.aurecongroup.com/talismansabre2013.

The feedback received will be used by Defence to guide and inform the final Public Environment Report.