Australia’s ongoing interests in Antarctica and the Southern Ocean are in the spotlight this year with the commissioning by the Federal Government of a 20 Year Australian Antarctic Strategic Plan. The Plan is being developed by Dr Tony Press, current CEO of the Antarctic Climate and Ecosystems Cooperative Research Centre. The terms of reference call for a comprehensive review of Australia’s Antarctic engagement. Dr Press has been consulting with stakeholders across the government and non-government sectors in Tasmania, across Australia, and even across the globe, to seek views on the future direction for Australia’s Antarctic program. It is the first time in nearly two decades that Australia has reviewed its Antarctic activities. Some 30 submissions have been received from experts, stakeholders and the general public, and the interest in the future of Australia’s Antarctic program has been significant.
‘This is a great opportunity to have a good hard look at where we’ve been, where we are, and where we are going,’ Dr Press said.
‘I look forward to delivering a plan that will lead Australia’s Antarctic program well into the 21st Century.’
The 20 year Australian Antarctic Strategic Plan is due to be delivered to Government on 1 July 2014. For further information visit the 20 Year Australian Antarctic Strategic Plan website.