bAP, Antarctic Peninsula (80-35°W); RS, Ross Sea (160°E-165°W); WL, Wilkes Land (100-160°E); PB, Prydz Bay (60-90°E); and WS, Weddell Sea (60°W-5°E). Based on Cooper et al. (1995).

oil spill was two orders of magnitude smaller than the Exxon Valdez accident, which released nearly 40 million liters of crude oil into Prince William Sound, Alaska, on 24 March 1989. Nonetheless, concerns about environmental impacts from Antarctic mineral resource activities were galvanized, and during this period France and Australia signaled their unwillingness to ratify CRAMRA. With-

Economic Litmus Test

(based on access to information) Science Industry t versus f

Shared Proprietary

Information Information

FIGURE 11.8 Litmus test for distinguishing scientific and economic interests in natural resources based on whether access to the data is open or restricted, respectively.

box 11.1 1988 convention on the regulation of antarctic mineral resource activities (cramra)a


3. In relation to Antarctic mineral resource activities, should they occur, the Parties acknowledge the special responsibility of the Antarctic Treaty Consultative Parties for the protection of the environment and the need to:

a. protect the Antarctic environment and dependent and associated ecosystems;

b. respect Antarctica's significance for, and influence on, the global environment;

c. respect other legitimate uses of Antarctica;

d. respect Antarctica's scientific value and aesthetic and wilderness qualities;

e. ensure the safety of operations in Antarctica;

f. promote opportunities for fair and effective participation of all Parties; and, g. take into account the interests of the international community as a whole.

aFrom the Antarctic Treaty Searchable Database: 1959-1999 CD-ROM.

box 11.2 1988 convention on the regulation of antarctic mineral resource activities (cramra)a


1. Decisions about Antarctic mineral resource activities shall take into account the need to respect other uses of Antarctica, including:

a. the operation of stations and their associated installations, support facilities and equipment in Antarctica;

b. scientific investigation in Antarctica and cooperation therein;

c. the conservation, including rational use, of Antarctic marine living resources;

d. tourism;

e. the preservation of historic monuments; and f. navigation and aviation;

that are consistent with the Antarctic Treaty system.

out the required unanimous support of the Antarctic Treaty Consultative Parties (Table 5.1), the minerals regime was abandoned (Table 5.2).

Ensuing from the CRAMRA, the Antarctic Treaty nations adopted the concept of Multiple-Use Planning Areas at the 15th Antarctic Treaty Consultative Meeting in 1989 (Recommendation XV-11):

... to ensure that on-going and planned human activities in Antarctica, through their combined or cumulative effects, do not result in mutual interference or in adverse impacts upon the Antarctic environment.

This concept of multiple uses goes beyond ''mutual interference'' to the heart of protecting and maintaining the unique values of Antarctica.

In addition, emerging quickly from CRAMRA, the 26 consultative nations of the Antarctic Treaty System signed the Protocol on Environmental Protection to the Antarctic Treaty (Protocol) in Madrid, Spain, in 1991 (Tables 5.1 and 5.2). Seven years later, after being ratified unanimously, the Protocol came into force as the comprehensive regime for assessing, preventing, and mitigating ''combined or cumulative'' impacts from the multiple uses of Antarctica (Box 11.3).

impact assessment

The Protocol (Article 3) institutes a broad framework for planning and conducting activities around Antarctica based on

. . . information sufficient to allow prior assessments of, and informed judgments about, their possible impacts on the Antarctic environment and dependent and associated ecosystems and on the value of Antarctica for the conduct of scientific research.

Utilizing scientific insights about the Earth system (Figs. III and IV), the Protocol further establishes general categories of natural phenomena that are of fundamental importance in protecting the Antarctic environments and ecosystems (Box 11.3).

What information is needed to distinguish human impacts from natural variability (Fig. IV)?

With foresight and a view toward proactive information gathering (Protocol, Article 3), ''prior assessments'' can be generated with ''key environmental parameters and ecosystem components so as to identify and provide early warning of any adverse effects. . . .'' Such environmental and ecosystem ''sentinels'' are being used widely throughout the world in research efforts such as the International Mussel Watch Program, which is being applied in Antarctica with the circumpolar scallop (Adamussium colbecki) and clam (Laternula elliptica) (Plate 6). General characteristics of key indicator organisms are described in Box 11.4.

However, ''prior assessments'' of human impacts on species, ecosystems, and environments often are unavailable because they were unanticipated. To play box 11.3 199 1 protocol on environmental protection to the antarctic treaty (protocol)a

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