The need for environmental monitoring in Antarctica: baselines, environmental impact assessments, accidents and footprints
The Protocol on Environmental Protection to the Antarctic Treaty (1991) requires the environmental monitoring of human activities carried out in Antarctica. The objective of such monitoring is to collect environmental information which can be used by decision-makers to help prevent or minimise environmental impact. Applied monitoring, driven by practical management needs, is a relatively new field of inquiry for most Antarctic scientists. This paper examines the background to environmental monitoring in Antarctica, the design of monitoring programmes, the application of monitoring results to environmental management and future research needs. In particular, it highlights the urgent need for international collaboration to validate data, effectively utilise scarce resources and devise standard monitoring protocols for wide application amongst the Treaty countries.
Authors: Walton, David W.H. ORCID record for David W.H. Walton, Shears, John