Sustainable Development in Antarctic: Does the shoe fit?
Degree GrantorUniversity of Canterbury
Degree LevelPostgraduate Certificate
Degree NamePostgraduate Certificate in Antarctic Studies
Globally Sustainable Development is becoming recognised as a means to assess the state of the environment through ‘total systems’ thought process. Regional sustainable development strategies are being used as a tool to control the impact human activities are having on the environment. Environment in this context includes both ‘human ecology’ and the natural ecology on which we rely. Society works on a complex set of interactions termed the ‘fours spheres’ of Sustainable Development, the environment, economy, society and governing systems. Development in Antarctica is inevitable. Activity is increasing in scope and scale. Currently, there are no governing mechanism to deal with issues of sustainability, associated with activity in Antarctica. Some leadership in ‘total systems thinking’ is emerging from sources, such as member states and associated groups such as ASOC. For Antarctica to retain its ideals as a place for peace and science ‘in the interest of all mankind’, it is essential that the governing bodies take a closer look at the ‘big picture’ impacts Antarctic activities are having on the Antarctic and the rest of the world. An Antarctic Sustainable Development Strategy would create a long-term vision for the future health of the Antarctic. A number of tools have been suggested to guide the vision and a governing system to compliment it. A mechanism such as a sustainable development strategy needs to be implemented soon, before the opportunity for control is lost.