The Smithsonian is hosting an international conference today through Thursday, Dec.3, to mark the 50th anniversary of the Antarctic Treaty. The treaty, which was negotiated during the height of the Cold War, set aside the Antarctic–encompassing nearly 10 percent of the Earth–as the first international area managed in the interest of all mankind.
The conference event will be attended by diplomats, scientists, legislators, historians and others from around the world. Keynote speakers include John P. Holdren, Science Adviser to President Obama, and HSH Prince Albert II of Monaco. The participants will study how this successful treaty can provide a blueprint for international cooperation for the future governance of regions and resources beyound national. International spaces, such as the Arctic, the deep seas and international fishing grounds, cover nearly 75 percent of the Earth’s surface and are likely to increase in importance as issues such as the effects of climate change and the drain on natural resources increase.
In this video, Michael Lang, director of the Marine Science Department and the Institution’s Scientific Diving Officer, explains the success of the treaty in preserving the Antarctic for research and other peaceful purposes.
- “Painting Apollo, First Artist on Another World”
- Smithsonian scientists look at climate change from a global persepective
- Inspiring generations through knowledge and discovery
- From the Secretary: A Smithsonian that is more than the sum of its parts will be at the center of challenges facing our country and our world
- Growing up Great with Science