Should we travel to Antarctica at the time of global warming?
At a time of global warming, melting ice and threats of mass tourism, should we travel to Antarctica? I obviously do not have a definitive answer, but I think it is essential to ask the question before leaving.
When I left for the South Pole in 2013, I had just started traveling and I was not very aware of environmental or environmental issues and I never really asked myself. The company Quark Expeditions guaranteed us a trip to the environmental, applied the Treaty limiting measures on Antarctica and taking steps on board to protect the environment and wildlife of the continent. To know that tourism was limited, all the more because of the prohibitive prices and that measures were implemented, was enough for me. Today, with hindsight, I ask myself many questions and even if my dream is to return to Antarctica very soon, I do not know if I could do it under the same conditions.
Antarctica is the last frontier, the most unspoiled place on the planet, the last place where man has not yet begun to destroy everything. Apart from the scientists who reside there for a given period and the fauna, there are no inhabitants and the continent is protected by an International Treaty signed in 1959 to preserve the peace, also ratifying that nuclear tests would be prohibited. Illegal or legal and regulated fishing, exploitation of mineral resources for science or offshore, tourism … commercial activities already have their place on the white continent and are not always easy to control because of the size of the continent and harsh conditions of this environment. Tourism is not new in Antarctica and after a peak of 46,000 visitors in 2007-2008, new rules have brought down figures around 30,000 visitors a year making tourism in Antarctica (about 20,000 disembarking) . However, since 2016, tourism is constantly increasing, bringing the number of visitors around 44,000.