Antarctic Exploitation 23 replies

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Supercalifragilisticexpialidocious

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#1 12 years ago

Should the present ban on exploiting the resources of the Antarctic be maintained?

It is little more than one hundred years since humans first set foot on Antarctica and even today few people have visited the frozen and hostile southern continent. Although nine countries have territorial claims on the continent, several of them overlapping, these political disagreements were suspended in The Antarctic Treaty of 1959. In the Treaty (covering all areas south of 60 degrees South Latitude), it was agreed that Antarctica should be used exclusively for peaceful purposes and that military activities would be prohibited. It also guaranteed continued freedom for scientific research and promoted international scientific cooperation. Successive treaties have built upon this foundation, providing strong protection for the Antarctic environment and strictly regulating fishing, for example. These have culminated in the 1991 Protocol on Environmental Protection to the Antarctic Treaty (which entered fully into operation in 1998), which designates Antarctica as a "natural reserve, devoted to peace and science" and establishes environmental principles to govern the conduct of all activities. It also prohibits mining, arguments over which caused the failure of a proposed Convention on the Regulation of Antarctic Mineral Resource Activities (CRAMRA) in the late 1980s. CRAMRA would have potentially allowed future exploitation of Antarctic resources, subject to the agreement of all treaty signatories, but it ran into strong opposition from the international environmental movement, which convinced several of the treaty nations to refuse to sign it.

This topic considers whether it is right to maintain Antarctica purely as a "natural reserve, devoted to peace and science". Should some exploitation of its resources be allowed, or should the general ban on economic activity be extended to areas such as fishing and tourism?




Nederbörd

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#2 12 years ago

I think that Antarctica should be preserved, but tourism should be allowed. Antarctica is a beautiful land, even though it's the worlds coldest part. I wouldn't want to see it ruined by the worlds greed for oil, which Antarctica has in abundance. Same for coal. See, even this thread contains links to tourist companies who offer trips to Antarctica. I think we should leave that continent as it is.




Tas

Serious business brigade

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4th September 2004

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#3 12 years ago

Limited tourism should be allowed, but the place itself should be preserved.




Nederbörd

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#4 12 years ago

Limited tourism? Can you elaborate?




Tas

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#5 12 years ago

No massive building projects, hotels, ports for cruise ships, road construction and so on. I'm thinking eco tourism, not mass tourism. Mass tourism is as destructive if not more so than someone plopping down a oil rig up there.




Nederbörd

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#6 12 years ago
The 13th RaptorNo massive building projects, hotels, ports for cruise ships, road construction and so on. I'm thinking eco tourism, not mass tourism. Mass tourism is as destructive if not more so than someone plopping down a oil rig up there.

Ah ok, that's exactly what I meant in my posts too. It's not like I want to see a Hotel Sheraton in McMurdo, rather the eco-tourism you said. :)




Supercalifragilisticexpialidocious

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#7 12 years ago

I think tourism is out of the question. The place is for scientists to study the land, ice and animals for us and them to understand about mysterious wildlife. Tourism would definately be out of place for Antartica and it isnt right to jeopardize the pristine environment because of tourism. It's been said that acutally people arn't even going to Antartica to learn about it but because it's the next extreme outdoor sport location of where they can camp, scuba dive, swim, climb etc.

I don't know if you guys know but tourism has already left its mark in Antartica. Tremendous damage was done by the tourist vessel Bahai Paraiso in 1989 where it spilled 170,000 gallons of diseal petrol which killed countless krill and baby birds. A year and a half later, population reduction was found in gulls, penguins and many other animals. When i hear that people dump garbage in plastic bags near the waters of Antartica, tourism to the place is the last thing i want to agree with.




Nemmerle Forum Mod

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#8 12 years ago

What's the point in keeping a continent intact if no-one's going to see it?




Supercalifragilisticexpialidocious

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#9 12 years ago
NemmerleWhat's the point in keeping a continent intact if no-one's going to see it?

People arn't trying to protect Antartica for the good of a tourism resort are they? Antartica is an alternative to the world dominated by political disputes, economic exploitation and environmental destruction. Placing the continent under the care of scientists and out of reach from both politicians and multinational corporations has ensured it can be preserved unchanged for future generations. It is a model for future international cooperation and global efforts to save the planet.




Nemmerle Forum Mod

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#10 12 years ago
Dr.RiotPeople arn't trying to protect Antartica for the good of a tourism resort are they? Antartica is an alternative to the world dominated by political disputes, economic exploitation and environmental destruction. Placing the continent under the care of scientists and out of reach from both politicians and multinational corporations has ensured it can be preserved unchanged for future generations. It is a model for future international cooperation and global efforts to save the planet.

Making the entire planet a no-go area for humans isn't really practical. This is a model for making areas the near-exclusive reserve of scientists, nothing more.