Tensions rise after Russia discovers 511 billion barrels of oil in Antarctica

Tensions rise after Russia discovers 511 billion barrels of oil in Antarctica
Tensions rise after Russia discovers 511 billion barrels of oil in Antarctica
Read also: Oil is bad for democracy

Strengthened Russian presence

Signed in 1959 in Washington, the Antarctic Treaty provides significant protection for the area. The signatory countries thus recognize “that it is in the interest of all humanity that Antarctica is forever reserved solely for peaceful activities and becomes neither the scene nor the issue of international disputes.”

“Despite having no territorial claims in Antarctica, Russia, alongside the United States and China, has gradually strengthened its presence in the region in recent years through various scientific campaigns, establishing five research stations in the territory since 1957,” reports the magazine Newsweek.

Last week, “MP David Rutley told the EAC last week that his department had decided to trust Russian assurances that the country was only carrying out scientific research, adding: Russia has recently reaffirmed its commitment to the key elements of the treaty”, further details the Telegraph. Experts in the region have warned that it “was naive to trust Russia to meet its obligations – as its invasion of Ukraine showed”.

Also read: UK restarts oil and gas production in the North Sea

Careful monitoring

According to Klaus Dodds, professor of geopolitics at the United Kingdom’s Royal Holloway College, cited by Newsweek, Russia’s activities must be carefully examined to ensure that they comply with international standards. “There are concerns that Russia is collecting seismic data that could be interpreted as prospecting rather than scientific research […] “Russia’s activities must be understood as a move aimed at undermining the norms associated with seismic research, and ultimately, a precursor for future resource extraction,” he argued.

Russia’s actions in the region could thus “signal a potential threat to the permanent ban on mining.”

-

-

PREV Campari completes cash purchase of Courvoisier cognacs for €1.22 billion
NEXT “I grabbed her leg and pulled”: how Fabrilene saved her colleague from a burning car