Antarctica really is the last untouched wilderness on earth.
The icy southern continent that evokes the spirit of adventure of polar explorers and untouched wonder.
So why all of this fuss about Antarctica?
It is the only continent on earth with no indigenous human population and as such no other country has claim over it.
There are ongoing territorial disputes between countries who claim Antarctica as their own, but it only takes five minutes being there to realise that she belongs to no one.
The harsh environment is one of the things that have made permanent human habitation impossible.
Antarctica is the coldest, driest and windiest place on earth, a desert of ice if you will.
A place frozen in time.
Nothing that is left behind decomposes or changes so if rubbish is left, you will find it one hundred years later just as you left it.
One of the most important travel sayings really is true about Antarctica: ‘take nothing but memories and leave nothing but footsteps.’
She is home to unique wildlife that has nowhere else to go if anything should happen to their home.
Penguins, orcas, whales, seals, sea lions and other birds inhabit the Antarctic and as commercial whaling and hunting was not as wide spread as the Arctic the animals are curious and inquisitive of the ships that enter their waters.
Key scientific data is being taken and measured from the ice and Antarctica is helping scientists to understand more about our earth and its formation and evolution.
Want to know more about Antarctica? Check out these cool facts below:
Of the 17 penguin species in the world only 4 call the Antarctic home- there is literally no where for them to go if they loose the only home they know.
Antarctica holds 90% of the world’s ice and 70% of the world’s fresh water. In some places the ice is up the 4 kilometres thick. If the continent continues to be affected by the changing climate then there is a risk of Antarctica melting away.
Antarctica is the coldest and driest place on earth. Any object left behind on the ice is preserved perfectly and will not age. It is so important to keep Antarctica pristine and to make sure that no waste is left behind to taint the pristine landscape.
The lowest world temperature was recorded in Antarctica in 1983? It was a freezing negative 89.2 degrees Celsius.
So whats the problem?
Well apart from feeling the effects of climate change, melting ice, glaciers breaking up etc there is a bigger threat looming.
Antarctica is currently protected by the memorandum that prohibits mining and drilling.
This treaty however is up for review in the year 2041 and there is the potential for amendments to be made that allow for this.
By the year 2041 the earth will be facing an energy crisis and for many mining and oil companies heading south will be a viable option.
After the catastrophic situation that has been witnessed with oil drilling in the Arctic do we really need to do the same in the Antarctic?
This is why it is so important to be utilising and researching alternative renewable energy options.
So that come the year 2041 we will no longer be so reliant on coal and oil and Antarctica will be left alone.
Stay tuned for next months post where I give you my top eco tips for living a green life every day.
If you want to learn more about Antarctica, penguins and perhaps be inspired join the Green for Antarctica movement and check out my book available for purchase via amazon.com here