Monday, December 1, 2014

Antarctica Day

Happy Antarctica Day!

Antarctica Day is celebrated in honor of the signing of the Antarctic Treaty on December 1, 1959. Today is the 55th anniversary of its signing!

The 50 countries that have signed the Antarctic Treaty agree that Antarctica should be preserved for peaceful and scientific purposes. The Treaty specifies that there be no military presence (except in helping transport people and supplies), no nuclear activity (so no nuclear energy or weapons), and that the continent be open for international scientific exploration and cooperation. It's the reason that so much great science can take place in Antarctica, which allows me to be here!

Here is how we celebrated its 55th anniversary at Rothera Station:
I'm holding the left "5"

We are scheduled to leave for the field tomorrow, and we'll be spending about a week in remote field camps to collect soil samples. I won't have any internet over that period, so it'll be a while before you hear from me again (assuming the weather cooperates and we get to leave on schedule).