Zero science: 187 Argentine scientists and researchers will be deployed to Antarctica


A total of 187 scientists and technicians are part of 46 research teams in various scientific and technological fields that will be deployed this summer to ten of the thirteen bases that Argentina operates in its Antarctic sector, under the annual Antarctic Plan. Tomorrow, Foreign Minister Santiago Cafiero will be presented with other national authorities.

In this framework, it should be noted that the Annual Plan of Antarctica (PAA) contains all the activities that the Argentine Antarctic Program plans to carry out on the white continent between November 1, 2021 and October 31, 2022, and they are developed in Argentine bases, in the camps spread from some of those bases, In particular from the Marambio base, and on board ships equipped with instruments for marine science research.

Secretary of Malvinas, Antarctica and the South Atlantic, Guillermo Carmona, emphasized in an interview with Telam Agency that the PAA Act is “a concrete expression of the policy of Argentina’s sovereign presence in Antarctica and the country’s role in the Antarctic Treaty System and its backbone is the development of scientific knowledge on that continent.”

“The scientific research promoted by Argentina in Antarctica and all the logistical operations carried out by the armed forces in support of science in that continent are related to the issue of sovereignty,” the official said.

In turn, planned investigations address areas of scientific knowledge such as the life sciences, which include marine ecosystems and resources, microbial communities, biology of top predators, ecological physiology and ecotoxicology, terrestrial ecosystems, human biology and psychology.

Earth sciences, which include geological connections between Antarctica and South America, geological mapping, abiotic aspects of climate change, geophysics and Antarctic geodesy, will also be taken into account.

They also explained that there are projects developed in the field of physical and chemical sciences and environmental research, such as the effects of global climate change, marine pollution control, physical oceanography, interdisciplinary winter activities, and upper-atmosphere studies. and parameters related to space weather and atmospheric monitoring.

Carmona argued that “the program must deal, on the one hand, with the evolution of the Antarctic system in general, where the environmental issue has become very important in recent decades; and, on the other hand, with the fingerprints of management decisions, such as the inclusion of the social sciences in Antarctic research.”

In this sense, he noted that the latter approach implies “the recognition of an Antarctic population that renews annually but has had a permanent existence since 1904, and this must also be taken up through history, anthropology, and sociology”.

“We also seek to further disseminate and disseminate all this important scientific work that Argentina is doing in Antarctica, to compile all this information including many investigations about our history on the continent,” he added.

In this way, the activities integrated in the PAA reach the research projects developed by the Argentinean Institute of Antarctica (IAA), including those carried out in cooperation with other national and international organizations and universities, as well as with other Antarctic programs in other countries.

These initiatives include, in some cases, participation in the Antarctic Campaign from researchers from other countries, such as Italy and Colombia, and institutions such as Conicet and national universities; It also includes the participation of Argentine researchers in the activities of other Antarctic Programs.

The official explained that “Argentina is the only country that maintains a school in Antarctica, which did not open in 2021 due to the pandemic, and that in 2022 it will reopen for children and adolescents from families who live and work at the Esperanza base, the same station where it operates. The radio station with its own programming “Arcángel San Gabriel” that relies on national radio again this year”.

“Argentina is a country declared by law to be bi-continental and this strong place we stand indicates that for us Antarctica is no longer just a scrap on the side of the map, but a comprehensive and complete vision of sovereignty; PAA promotes the integration of Antarctica into the national development of By knowing its resources, clarifying scientific research with production and caring for the environment.”

“For Argentina, Antarctica is integrated in the geopolitical perspective with the Malvinas and the South Atlantic, which is why we are also activating a branch office of the Secretariat in Ushuaia, to be close to the Antarctic sector, the islands and the inter-oceanic corridor,” Carmona completed.

Finally, it is necessary to emphasize that the plan also includes tasks of hydrographic and topographic surveys, automatic identification systems at Argentine bases, Antarctic signals, Antarctic marine meteorology and glaciology, meteorological observation and forecasting implemented by the National Meteorological Service and Marine Hydrography. service.

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