Madrid Protocol On Environmental Protection To The Antarctic Treaty:
Union Minister of Earth Sciences addressed the International Conference commemorating the signing of the Madrid Protocol on Environmental Protection to the Antarctic Treaty.
- India signed the Antarctic Treaty on 19th August 1983 and soon thereafter received consultative status on 12th September 1983.
- The Madrid Protocol was signed by India which came into force on 14th January, 1998.
- The Protocol on Environmental Protection to the Antarctic Treaty was signed in Madrid on October 4, 1991 and entered into force in 1998.
- It designates Antarctica as a “natural reserve, devoted to peace and science”.
- India is one of the 29 Consultative Parties to the Antarctic Treaty.
- India is also a member of Council of Managers of National Antarctic Programme (COMNAP) and Scientific Committee of Antarctica Research (SCAR). All these representations show the significant position that India holds among the nations involved in Antarctic research.
- India has two active research stations; Maitri (commissioned in 1989) at Schirmacher Hills, and Bharati (commissioned in 2012) at Larsemann Hills in Antarctica.
- India has successfully launched 40 annual scientific expeditions to Antarctica till date.
- With Himadri station in Ny-Alesund, Svalbard, Arctic, India now belongs to the elite group of nations that have multiple research stations within the Polar Regions.