What if humans can live in Antarctica
Five times wise - How many people are there in Antarctica?
- Current article
Several thousand people visit the world's southernmost continent every year; many of them on behalf of research, but also many tourists. Protecting the sensitive ecosystem is a major challenge.
There are no indigenous people in Antarctica. Almost all of the people who are on the huge, largely ice-covered land are scientists and the associated staff from the catering and technology sectors. An international treaty stipulates that the continent is reserved exclusively for peaceful uses and scientific research. Depending on the season, up to 2,500 people from 27 countries live in the Antarctic in summer and around 300 in winter - spread over a total of 80 research stations.
Since the 1950s, people have been exploring the huge ice masses of the Antarctic - among other things with ice drilling, with which the climate of the past can be reconstructed. But a race to the South Pole had already begun 50 years earlier. The participants were adventurers from different countries, with the Norwegian Roald Amundsen celebrating the triumph of being the first person to reach the South Pole.
Since the 1960s, the Antarctic ice desert has also increasingly attracted adventurous tourists. Twenty years ago there were almost 7,000 people a year who wanted to see Antarctica with their own eyes - today it's already 40,000. In addition to cruises, organizers offer helicopter flights, ski and climbing tours. There are strict rules of conduct so as not to disturb the sensitive ecosystem. But more people could mean a greater burden on flora and fauna.
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