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Survey has had a very successful program in Antarctica and

has, probably, the most knowledge of any government agency about the geology and geography of this continent and

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However unlikely it may seem now, it is possible to envision

circumstances where shortages of critical mineral resources

may force other nations to ignore a ban.

Negotiating an

effective agreement to protect the Antarctic environment under these circumstances would be very difficult.

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Section 6(a) (4) would prevent the President from submitting

any future agreements to the Senate for ratification that

relate to "mineral resource or other activities in Antarctica

inconsistent with the purpose or provisions of this Act."


defer to the Department of Justice on whether this provision

infringes on the President's constitutional prerogatives.

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supported by the Department, represents a balanced and sound


for addressing both environmental and minerals

storehouse issues.

The Convention does not presume that mineral activities will

take place, but establishes an agreed system for determining

the acceptability of such activities should they be proposed in the future. If activity

determined to be



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prohibits exploration and development of minerals unless there is a consensus that such activities can be accomplished

in an environmentally sound manner.

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In the future, similar challenges may confront us with regard

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Mr. DE LUGO. Thank you.

The Chair will withhold any questions until we've heard from all of the witnesses in this panel.

And now, next, we'd like to hear from Director Scully of the Office of Ocean Affairs, Department of State. And, Director Scully, if you would summarize, please, it would be appreciated. Thank you.

Mr. SCULLY. Thank you, Mr. Chairman.
I certainly will do so.

Let me start by saying Will Steger is a hard act to follow. But, as one who has also had the great privilege to be in Antarctica on a number of occasions, I fully understand how one is infected by what is sometimes called the ice virus. I've had a great pleasure of being involved in Antarctic matters for some time, not in quite as exciting a fashion as Will, but in quite a fascinating fashion, I think.

Let me start with several words on our Antarctic policy. U.S. Antarctic policy rests upon three basic interlinked objectives: protection of the Antarctic environment and its associated and dependent ecosystems; ensuring that human activities in Antarctica do not result in the loss or limitations that this unique continent provides for studies regarding the environment and the natural processes of the planet; and, third, maintaining Antarctica as a zone of peace, exclusively reserved for peaceful purposes.

The achievement of these objectives, particularly in light of the differences among nations active in Antarctica, differences over the existence of territorial sovereignty there, require an agreed legal framework. That framework has been provided by a rather unusual and successful international agreement, the Antarctic Treaty of 1959, and the series of recommendations, measures and separate agreements that have grown up around that treaty and are collectively known as the Antarctic Treaty system.

The United States is a leader in the Antarctic Treaty system and our commitment to that system forms the basis of our comments on the pending legislation. In our view, the approach contained in the legislation is inconsistent with the essential elements of our Antarctic policy and, indeed, with our obligations under the Antarctic Treaty system.

I won't, in great detail, Mr. Chairman, summarize the elements of the Antarctic Treaty but let me make several points.

First, the Antarctic Treaty establishes Antarctica as a zone of peace. It bans all military activities. It prohibits nuclear explosions and the testing of weapons, prohibits the disposal of radioactive waste there and provides on-site inspection provisions in support of its provisions.

Second, it guarantees the freedom of scientific research in Antarctica and establishes the basis for international cooperation therein. The treaty also deals with the differences, profound differences, over the legal and political status of Antarctica between those nations that claim sovereignty there and those nations like the United States that neither recognize nor claim such sovereignty.

Through its imaginative juridical formulation, the parties agree to disagree over sovereignty and, by so doing, the treaty establishes

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