Wilkins Ice Shelf

Discussion in 'Alpine & Southern' started by Riggs, Mar 27, 2008.

  1. Riggs

    Riggs Hard Yards

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  2. Sandy

    Sandy Dark Sith Lord of the Pool Room Moderator Ski Pass: Gold

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    There is also discussion about the chunk breaking of Wilkins Ice Shelf here:

    clicky
     
    #2 Sandy, Mar 27, 2008
    Last edited by a moderator: Nov 14, 2013
  3. agentBM

    agentBM Part of the Furniture

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    I wonder precisely where this is....no maps to hand at work presently. Last week on NASA TV I took a still of what appeared to be a very large ice berg....and this from that article directed to above:

    "A leading American ice shelf expert, Ted Scambos, raised the alarm with international colleagues when he saw a satellite image taken on February 28 that revealed a 41-kilometre-long iceberg had broken off the south-western edge of the shelf."


    Will get that image and map at home to see and post if relevent. The ISS was tracking along the antarctic ice line / shore (sort of) during periods of orbit.
     
  4. oreo

    oreo One of Us Ski Pass: Gold

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    You know, if the continent melts, it could open up vast supplies of untapped oil and other resources. We should shore up our territorial claims. [/channeling Canada]
     
  5. Bogong

    Bogong Part of the Furniture Ski Pass: Gold

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    I interviewed an old timer who was an explorer in Antarctica in the 1950's. When they discovered the Prince Charles Mountains, they found an exposed coal seam, chipped off some lumps and had a camp fire. [​IMG] Of course, political correctness deems that fun things like that are banned theses days. [​IMG]

    But as the old timer's experience in the PCM's demonstrates, Antarctica is chockers with minerals and energy deposits. A vast amount has been discovered without even formal searches for it.

    I back Oreo's sentiment. The Arctic parts of Russia, Alaska, Canada and even Norway are chockers with wealth that is easy to dig or pump up. We own 43% of Antarctica and we should protect our rights to it's vast natural wealth.
     
    #5 Bogong, Mar 27, 2008
    Last edited by a moderator: Nov 11, 2013
  6. Airefuego

    Airefuego One of Us

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    Hmm... I don't know if it's "easy" but it can be done in those places.

    Problem is, there's a vast difference between those places and Antarctica. The fact that they are all cold places is not sufficient basis for comparison.

    Antarctica is massively further away from infrastructure and associated necessities such as power, labour and fuel. It's not joined by land to the rest of the world. It's tens of thousands of kilometres from any large potential markets.

    Plus once you get there, large portions of Antarctica are covered with ice, sometimes kilometres thick. It's almost entirely inaccessible for many months of the year. The weather is truly appalling. The distances involved are huge. The costs would be incredible. Even if the diplomatic issues about Antarctic claims were solved, there is no way that anyone could turn a profit mining Antarctica in the foreseeable future. It is far, far cheaper to get the stuff elsewhere. Especially stuff like coal which is plentiful and cheap (as you say, the reasons for avoiding coal are not expense-based).

    Actually - currently only 3 other countries recognise Australia's Antarctic claims. So it's not really safe to say we own it, or that we have the mineral rights. Plus international treaties (which we helped to write) ban mineral exploitation in Antarctica.

    In any case, Australia has vast mineral resource desposits on our own mainland. Even putting aside the practical and economic barriers, and the fragility of the Antarctic environments, what incentive could we possibly have for opening Antarctica up to mining?
     
    #6 Airefuego, Apr 2, 2008
    Last edited by a moderator: Nov 17, 2013
  7. Riggs

    Riggs Hard Yards

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    #7 Riggs, Apr 7, 2008
    Last edited by a moderator: Nov 14, 2013