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Who Owns Antarctica?


Via Seth Dixon
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Blake Joseph's curator insight, April 24, 2015 3:48 PM

With Antarctica being the coldest, driest, and most isolated continent on earth, it is surprising that 51 different countries own pieces of land on it. As of now, the lands there can only be used strictly for scientific research, but I presume that treaty will not be in effect forever. Hidden resources yet to be discovered and future technology and is bound to give us some reason to permanently settle in this barren land someday. Discovering oil or minerals would be a good bet, as it was a leading factor in causing Dubai to form in the Arabian Desert, or the city of Perth in Western Australia. A healthy fishing industry could even help support future economies there. While weather has always been an important factor in human colonization, it does not make a place totally inhospitable. If economies can form in places like Barrow, Alaska and Longyearbyen, Norway, I don't see future  settlements in Antarctica as an impossibility.

Norka McAlister's curator insight, April 25, 2015 5:20 PM

In reality, no one own Antarctica for now. However, it is governed under the Antarctica treaty of 1959.  There are a few reasons why no one has been claimed Antarctica, one being that is has extremely cold temperatures that drop to -122 °F. The continent also has a vast amount of thick ice that is 3 miles deep and covers its surface. In addition, it would be very costly to explore these regions and difficult to build infrastructure and transport food due to the cold temperatures and frozen seas. The Antarctica treaty of 1959 is an international agreement which states that no one cannot own the Antarctica. However, some countries have claimed some part of Antarctica. These designated areas are only to be used for scientific research purposes. Also, since an international agreement has been putted in place, Antarctica cannot be used for military purposes. The agreement also stresses freedom of scientific investigation but prohibits nuclear testing and waste disposal in Antarctica. This research has helped scientists discover new truths about global problems, climate change, and geology. 

Kristin Mandsager San Bento's curator insight, May 1, 2015 4:16 PM

It will be interesting to see what happens to Antartica as the climate shifts and continues to get warmer.  What is under the frozen tundra?  Will it be something of a natural resource or mineral?  I think this is when the fight will get real about the slice of pie and how much each has.  

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Land Unseen: What's Beneath Antarctica's Ice?

Land Unseen: What's Beneath Antarctica's Ice? | Educated | Scoop.it

"Many of us tend to think of Antarctica as a sheet of solid snow and ice. But, in contrast with its peer to the north, the southern pole's ice sheet lies atop a rocky continent. What are its features, its mountains and valleys, plains and coastlines?

A new dataset from the British Antarctic Survey provides the most detailed map ever of the bedrock below, information scientists hope will enable them to better model the affects of climate change on the ice, whose melting will have an impact on climate the world over."


Via Seth Dixon
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Seth Dixon's curator insight, June 14, 2013 2:12 PM

This video sheds some light on explorations to uncover truths about one of the most remote places on Earth.


Tags: Antarctica, water, physical, remote sensing, geospatial.


Johani Karonen's curator insight, June 17, 2013 4:46 AM

Talking about challanges - Amundsen and Scott sure had a tough one!

Jason, Charlie's curator insight, October 3, 2013 1:33 PM

This is the Intellctual part of Antarctica. This video talks about what is underneathAntarctica. Its' ice is flowing out towardsstone sea and could contribute to sea rise. If Antarctica didn't have anymoreonce our ocean would have a major rise but Antarctica would be a new place.