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SCAR XXXV Paper 32: Antarctic Treaty Secretariat Report

SCAR XXXV Delegates Meeting, Davos, Switzerland, 25-26 June 2018

SCAR XXXV Paper 32: Antarctic Treaty Secretariat Report

Agenda Item: 7.1.

Person Responsible: A. Lluberas

 

Executive Summary 

Author

Albert Lluberas Executive Secretary, Secretariat of the Antarctic Treaty.

Summary of activities between 2016-18 and any other important matters

The XLI Antarctic Treaty Consultative Meeting (ATCM) was held in Buenos Aires, Argentina from 16 to 18 May 2018, during which Consultative Parties met for the purpose of exchanging information, holding consultations and considering and recommending to their Governments measures in furtherance of the principles and objectives of the Treaty.

Discussions in the ATCM focused on the following issues: operation of the Antarctic Treaty System including Secretariat matters; biological prospecting in Antarctica; update of the Multi-year Strategic Work Plan; inspections under the Antarctic Treaty and the Environment Protocol; and tourism and non-governmental activities (trends, patterns and environmental impact) in the Antarctic Treaty area.

The Meeting adopted a set of Measures, Decisions and Resolutions, including the revision of five of the 75 Antarctic Specially Protected Areas (ASPAs).

The three Decisions were related to the Secretariat Report, Programme and Budget; the renewal of the contract with the Secretariat’s auditor; and the Multi-Year Strategic Work Plan.

The five Resolutions pertained to: Guidelines for the assessment and management of Heritage in Antarctica; Revised Guide to the presentation of Working Papers containing proposals for Antarctic Specially Protected Areas, Antarctic Specially Managed Areas or Historic Sites and Monuments; Environmental Guidelines for operation of Remotely Piloted Aircraft Systems (RPAS) in Antarctica; SCAR’s Environmental Code of Conduct for Terrestrial Scientific Field Research in Antarctica; and Site Guidelines for Visitors.

The Meeting welcomed the invitation of the Government of the Czech Republic to host ATCM XLII in Prague, from 1 to 11 July 2019.

For future planning, the Meeting took note of the following likely timetable of upcoming ATCMs:

• 2020 Finland

• 2021 France

The Meeting agreed to support that a Declaration by Consultative Parties be made at ATCM XLII to commemorate the 60 years since the signing of the Treaty. It requested SCAR’s participation in the drafting of the declaration, to ensure that it reflected and drew the public’s attention to the importance of Antarctic science and the relevance of Antarctica to the rest of the world, and also to highlight the many changes that have taken place in Antarctica over the past 60 years.

Recommendations

1. To participate in the ATCM forum on the drafting of the Prague Declaration.

2. To present at ATCM XLII an update to its report contained in WP 2 Biological Prospecting in the Antarctic presented at ATCM XXXIII.

3. SCAR to give another lecture on scientific issues relevant to ATCM XLII.