Navigation Links
The challenges facing the vulnerable Antarctic
Date:7/12/2012

A century ago, the South Pole was one of Earth's last frontiers, but now the Antarctic is under threat from human activity.

Led by Monash University's Professor Steven Chown, a multidisciplinary team of experts from around the globe has set out the current and future conservation challenges facing the Antarctic in a Policy Forum article published today in Science.

The team analysed the effectiveness of the existing Antarctic Treaty System for protecting the region, one of the world's largest commons, from the threats of climate change and, as technology improves, increasing prospects of use of the Antarctic's natural resources.

Using a horizon scanning approach, the team determined that the major short-term threats included climate change impacts on marine systems, marine resource use, ocean acidification, invasive alien species, pollution, habitat alteration, and regulatory challenges within the Treaty system.

Professor Chown, incoming Head of Biological Sciences at Monash said the impacts of climate change were particularly worrying.

"Interactions between resource use and climate change are especially significant threats," Professor Chown said.

"Climate change is increasing the risk of the introduction of non-indigenous species. Several alien species, which have track records of being highly invasive, are already present in the Peninsula region and the risks are growing."

The team also looked at the likely situation in half a century. In the longer-term, climate change impacts on terrestrial systems, and the impacts of ocean acidification on marine organisms are growing threats.

Professor Chown said that the Treaty system remains effective, but swifter decision-making and more collaboration were vital if the Antarctic was to be conserved.

"The quick pace of change in much of the region is under-appreciated. There's warming in the Western Antarctic, changing species distributions, and a quickening in the rate of ice-loss, among other clear signs," Professor Chown said.

"The early explorers, such as Scott, Mawson and Amundsen would certainly be surprised at what they'd find in Antarctica now and by what's being discussed as possibilities."

Over the longer term, growing tourism and science activities will raise the prospect of permanent human settlement, and interests in resource use will escalate. The authors pointed out that these developments would mean substantial challenges to the conservation of the region, and in consequence to its governance through the Antarctic Treaty System.


'/>"/>
Contact: Emily Walker
emily.walker@monash.edu
61-399-034-844
Monash University
Source:Eurekalert

Related biology news :

1. Survival of the fittest -- ESF hosts session on the challenges of life in extreme environments
2. New research reveals challenges in genetically engineered crop regulatory process
3. Lawson recieves Grand Challenges Explorations grant for groundbreaking research
4. Boston Healthcare Associates Roundtable Explores Challenges and Opportunities Surrounding the Value of Big Data within the Life Sciences
5. Report addresses challenges in implementing new diagnostic tests where they are needed most
6. Recruitment by genotype for genetic research poses ethical challenges, study finds
7. Could cap and trade for water solve problems facing the United States largest rivers?
8. New study will help protect vulnerable birds from impacts of climate change
9. Crabs, insects and spiders vulnerable to oil spill, but also resilient
10. Energy requirements make Antarctic fur seal pups vulnerable to climate change
11. Genetic survey of endangered Antarctic blue whales shows surprising diversity
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:
(Date:6/3/2016)... Das DOTM (Department ... hat ein 44 Millionen $-Projekt ... einschließlich Personalisierung, Registrierung und IT-Infrastruktur, an Decatur ... Implementierung von Identitätsmanagementlösungen. Zahlreiche renommierte internationale Anbieter ... aber Decatur wurde als konformste und innovativste ...
(Date:6/2/2016)... The Weather Company , an IBM Business (NYSE: IBM ... which consumers will be able to interact with IBM Watson ... or text and receive relevant information about the product or ... long sought an advertising solution that can create a one-to-one ... valuable; and can scale across millions of interactions and touchpoints. ...
(Date:6/1/2016)... 1, 2016 Favorable Government Initiatives ... and Criminal Identification to Boost Global Biometrics System Market ... TechSci Research report, " Global Biometrics Market By ... and Opportunities, 2011 - 2021", the global biometrics market ... on account of growing security concerns across various end ...
Breaking Biology News(10 mins):
(Date:6/27/2016)... 27, 2016  Liquid Biotech USA ... of a Sponsored Research Agreement with The University ... (CTCs) from cancer patients.  The funding will be ... correlate with clinical outcomes in cancer patients undergoing ... then be employed to support the design of ...
(Date:6/24/2016)... ... 24, 2016 , ... While the majority of commercial spectrophotometers and fluorometers use ... 6000i models are higher end machines that use the more unconventional z-dimension of 20mm. ... from the bottom of the cuvette holder. , FireflySci has developed several Agilent ...
(Date:6/23/2016)... CAMBRIDGE, Mass. , June 23, 2016 /PRNewswire/ ... the development of novel compounds designed to target ... compound, napabucasin, has been granted Orphan Drug Designation ... in the treatment of gastric cancer, including gastroesophageal ... cancer stemness inhibitor designed to inhibit cancer stemness ...
(Date:6/23/2016)... MA (PRWEB) , ... June 23, 2016 , ... ... Peel Plate® YM (Yeast and Mold) microbial test has received AOAC Research Institute ... platform of microbial tests introduced last year,” stated Bob Salter, Vice President of ...
Breaking Biology Technology: