Following an election commitment in 2013, the Government commissioned Dr Tony Press as an independent expert to prepare a 20 Year Australian Antarctic Strategic Plan report that provides advice on Australia’s future interests in Antarctica.

The Hon. Greg Hunt MP, Minister for the Environment, together with Senator the Hon Eric Abetz, the Leader of the Government in the Senate, released the report on 10 October 2014.

The report provides a broad assessment of the current status of the Australian Antarctic Programme and the challenges to maintaining and expanding Australia’s well-regarded status in Antarctic science, operations and diplomacy. Development of the report involved extensive stakeholder and community engagement. It makes 35 recommendations of action required to pursue Australia’s national Antarctic interests over the next 20 years and beyond.

Recommendations cover a range of key issues, including:

  • Australia’s national interests in Antarctica
  • Supporting and leading national and international Antarctic science
  • Building economic benefits for Tasmania as an Antarctic Gateway city
  • Australia’s future Antarctic station operations, transport and deep field traverse capabilities and support for large field-based research campaigns
  • Effective administration of the Australian Antarctic Territory

 

The 20 Year Australian Antarctic Strategic Plan

The 20 Year Australian Antarctic Strategic Plan represents one of the most significant developments of Australia’s Antarctic program in the 21st century. With more than 100 years of Antarctic engagement, the development of the Plan will draw on Australia’s historical, strategic and scientific relationship with Antarctica.

The Plan is scheduled for completion by mid 2014 and will draw on extensive consultation with experts, stakeholders and the general public. It will consider a wide range of issues of strategic importance to Australia’s Antarctic program including the role of Tasmania as the gateway for Antarctic expeditions and scientific research, the logistical and operational requirements to support access to the Australian Antarctic Territory and other parts of Antarctica, options for Australia’s future presence in Antarctica, high priority science in Antarctica and the Southern Ocean, and future priorities for Australia’s engagement in Antarctic affairs through the Antarctic Treaty system.

 

For more information please read the report by clicking on the image below:

Antarctic

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