Chile opposes commercial exploitation of minerals and hydrocarbons in Antarctica

Chile opposes commercial exploitation of minerals and hydrocarbons in Antarctica
Chile opposes commercial exploitation of minerals and hydrocarbons in Antarctica

The president of Chile, Gabriel Boric, expressed this Thursday his rejection of commercial exploitation of minerals and hydrocarbons in Antarctica after information came to light that Russia would be carrying out illegal prospecting for oil and gas reserves on the continent. frozen. “We will firmly oppose any commercial exploitation of minerals and hydrocarbons and we will work together with all claimant countries and signatories of the Antarctic Treaty to ensure respect for this norm by any nation,” he said on the social network X. For his part, the Chilean Foreign Minister, Alberto van Klaveren, has stressed on the aforementioned social network that this information about new mineral and hydrocarbon reserves in Antarctica is not confirmed. “The Antarctic regime prohibits its prospecting and exploitation,” he recalled. This comes after a session was held on May 8 in the Environmental Audit subcommittee on Polar Research of the British House of Commons in which several parliamentarians expressed concern about Russian activity in Antarctica due to the possibility that were doing illegal “prospecting” instead of “data collection and scientific research” on the ground. In the session they also referred to journalistic information from a South African media outlet that reported in 2020 that a Russian polar research vessel called ‘Alexander Karpinsky’ docked in the capital, Cape Town, after a mission in February of that year. anus. Days after the subcommittee session, the conservative British newspaper ‘The Telegraph’ published an article in which it analyzed the alleged discovery by the Russian geological agency Rosgeo of 700 billion tons of oil and gas buried under the Antarctic shelf. It should be remembered that London claims one million square kilometers of Antarctica as its own – the only continent that does not have a native human population – including territorial areas claimed by both Argentina and Chile.

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