On Thursday, 14 July 2016 we hosted a panel discussion Exploring the Antarctic Treaty in 2056 in collaboration with the New Zealand Antarctic Youth Council (NZAYC). The panel discussed
New Zealand’s intent in 1956 and then explored what our interest might look like 100 years later. It was fantastic to bring the Wellington ocean community together and build a narrative through the diverse range of thoughts.
We chose the year 2056 as this will mark 100 years since New Zealand first established its presence in Antarctica, which is important context for a discussion around our long term interest in the continent. In 1956, the Royal New Zealand Air Force scouted the route for New Zealand’s first Trans-Antarctic Expedition, and the Royal New Zealand Navy’s HMNZS Endeavour set sail from the Port of Wellington with materials to start building Scott Base.
The discussion highlighted a clear need to engage early with New Zealand’s role in the governance of Antarctica going forward. The Treaty presents a unique opportunity, and we need to work together to explore creative policy solutions today for officials to implement tomorrow.
Professor of Marine Geology, Victoria University of Wellington
Dr Neil Gilbert
Adjunct Senior Fellow at Gateway Antarctica, University of Canterbury
Director of Antarctic Research Centre, Victoria University of Wellington
Rear Admiral John Martin
Chief of Navy
Director-General, Department of Conservation
Senior Legal Adviser at MFAT
NZAYC will be producing a discussion paper touching upon some of the issues raised by the panel and audience, with an estimated publishing date of September 2016. We will also be publishing videos of the speakers’ discussions on the McGuinness Institute’s YouTube Channel.
For more information about NZAYC, see the New Zealand Antarctic Youth Council website.
(a) Invitation to this event
(b) PowerPoint presentation