The ozone hole over Antarctica has shrunk to the smallest in five years, according to a New Zealand’ National Institute of Water and Atmospheric Research, NIWAR. The hole decreased in size to about 22 million square kilometres from 24 million square kilometres last year, said Auckland-based NIWAR in an e-mailed statement today.
The Royal Navy deep water survey ship HMS Scott deployed to the Antarctic early morning Thursday from Plymouth, which coincides with the 100th anniversary of Captain Scott's final expedition to the area.
Chile will undertake its most ambitious scientific expedition in almost half a century of Antarctic activities with 52 projects planned for the 2010/2011 season. The activities program was announced by Javier Arata head of the Chilean Antarctic Institute Antarctic Science Program.
The Antarctic tourism season is just getting underway and travellers the world over are preparing to make the journey to the bottom of the planet where they'll be treated to one of the most remote and untouched destinations on Earth.
The Chilean air force plane carrying President Sebastian Piñera and his Ecuadorian counterpart, Rafael Correa, to Antarctica was forced to return to Punta Arenas, extreme south of Chile, after the pilots found it impossible to land due to bad weather, officials said.
Punta Arenas launched Sunday the “Chilean Antarctica Day” celebrations that are programmed to last a full week including the visit of Chilean president Sebastián Piñera and his Ecuadorean peer Rafael Correa, specially invited for the occasion.
Chile’s DAP airlines, which at one time was the link between Punta Arenas and the Falkland Islands, has incorporated a second BAE-146 for seasonal charter flights to Antarctica.
Argentina’s population and housing census which this week took off in Antarctica revealed that 230 people live in the six Argentine bases including nine families and 16 children. The survey was done two days before the official launching in continental Argentina and was considered a “very successful experience”.
Uruguay celebrated on Thursday the 25 years since being accepted as Consultative member of the Antarctic Treaty. The event coincided this year with the XXXIIIth Antarctic Treaty Consultative meeting which for the first time was hosted by Uruguay last May.
Sunflowers are likely to have sprung up about 50 million years ago in Argentine Patagonia, suggests a fossil report according to an article in the current edition of Science magazine.