Regions and network

UNEPGEFUniversity of Kalmar
Subregion 66: Antarctic

  • Major intergovernmental agreements and actors
  • Action programmes, strategies, and research
  • State of the regional environment
  • GEF Projects in the region
  • Other actors and initiatives

    Major intergovernmental agreements and actors

    Antarctic Treaty
    The full text of the Treaty is found on this site, which also offers the full text of the Protocol on Environmental Protection to the Antarctic Treaty.

    Protocol on Environmental Protection to the Antarctic Treaty
    The Protocol on Environmental Protection to the Antarctic Treaty and its Committee for Environmental Protection (CEP) are the outcome of a continuously growing awareness within the Antarctic Treaty system of the importance of protecting the fragile Antarctic environment. Environmental protection has always played a central role in cooperation within the Antarctic Treaty system, and in 1991 this cumulated in the signing of the Protocol on Environmental Protection to the Antarctic Treaty which, inter alia, establishes the CEP. The Protocol entered into force in 1998 following the ratification of the Protocol of all Consultative Parties to the Antarctic Treaty.
    The Committee was established in 1998 with the functions to provide advice and formulate recommendations to the Antarctic Treaty Parties in connection with the implementation of the Environmental Protocol. The site of the Committee for Environmental Protection, maintained and operated by the Norwegian Polar Institute, includes information on CEP and its activities (Environmental Impact Assessments, Area Protection, Management Conservation of Antarctic Flora and Fauna).

    Convention on the Conservation of Antarctic Marine Living Resources
    The Convention (CCAMLR) came into force in 1982, as part of the Antarctic Treaty System. "The aim of the Convention is to conserve marine life. This does not exclude harvesting as long as such harvesting is carried out in a rational manner."
    On the site of the Commission for the Conservation of Antarctic Marine Living Resources, executive body of the Convention, one finds the full text of the Convention, information about the Commission and the Scientific Committee and their work. See for example the CCAMLR Ecosystem Monitoring Program (CEMP) and Fisheries Monitoring.

    Convention for the Conservation of Antarctic Seals
    The objectives, as stated in the preamble, of the 1972 Convention are "to promote and achieve the protection, scientific study and rational use of Antarctic seals, and to maintain a satisfactory balance within the ecological system of the Antarctic".

    Convention on the Regulation of Antarctic Mineral Resource Activities, 1988


    Action programmes, strategies and research


    Scientific Committee on Antarctic Research, SCAR
    The main purpose of SCAR is to provide a forum for scientists of all countries with research activities in the Antarctic to discuss their field activities and plans and to promote collaboration between them. SCAR also has an important function to provide scientific advice to the Antarctic Treaty System. For the purpose of SCAR, the 'Antarctic' is considered to be bounded by the Antarctic convergence, although certain sub-Antarctic islands which lie outside the Antarctic convergence may be included in SCAR's area of interest. SCAR has a number of working groups:


    State of the regional environment

    GEO 2000 State of the Environment: Antarctic

    Global Enviroment Outlook 2000. GEO is:

    • a global environmental assessment process, the GEO Process, that is cross-sectoral and participatory. It incorporates regional views and perceptions, and builds consensus on priority issues and actions through dialogue among policy-makers and scientists at regional and global levels.
    • GEO outputs, in printed and electronic formats, including the GEO Report series. This series makes periodic reviews of the state of the world's environment, and provides guidance for decision-making processes such as the formulation of environmental policies, action planning and resource allocation. Other outputs include technical reports, a web site and a publication for young people.

    GEF Projects in the region



    Other actors, initiatives and resources

    The Antarctic - a Large Marine Ecosystem (LME)
    A Large Marine Ecosystem, LME, is a "region of ocean space encompassing coastal areas from river basins and estuaries to the seaward boundary of continental shelves and the seaward margins of coastal current systems. It is a relatively large region characterized by distinct bathymetry, hydrography, productivity, and trophically dependent populations." See also Rhode Island University map of LMEs.


  • Global International Waters Assessment, GIWA
    SE- 391 82 Kalmar, Sweden
    Phone: +46- 480 44 60 00. Fax: +46- 480 44 73 55.

    page last modified on 22 August 2006