Environmental contamination and the legacy of human activity: mitigation, remediation and liability in the Antarctic
Degree GrantorUniversity of Canterbury
Degree LevelPostgraduate Certificate
Degree NamePostgraduate Certificate in Antarctic Studies
The impacts of pollution and contamination in Antarctica are multi-faceted and significant. Atmospheric, marine and terrestrial contaminants are having adverse effects on the Antarctic environment and pose significant management challenges. The current framework for managing human activities in the Antarctic is increasingly complex with considerable differences in the operationalisation and interpretation of both the Antarctic Treaty and the Madrid Protocol between Antarctic operators. Many current practices are incongruent with the principles outlined within the Treaty and the Protocol. Attempts to rectify these practices have so far failed to elicit unanimous positive environmental outcomes. Effective mitigation strategies are necessary to prevent further contamination and provide best practice environmental management with the increasing pressures of human activity in Antarctica. Managing legacy and liability issues is an important stage in remediating past environmental contamination. A more effective governance regime and increased political will by all is required to achieve compliance with the environmental standards set within the Protocol in order to achieve comprehensive protection of Antarctica and Antarctic values.