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Endangered polar heritage


There are 76 sites on the official list of historic sites and monuments in Antarctica. 11 of them are, or used to be, Norwegian. Cultural heritage is a non-renewable resource endangered by environmental pollutants and increased tourism.

We need a lot more research on Norwegian historic sites in Antarctica, says Susan Barr, special adviser at the Norwegian Directorate for Cultural Heritage. She is president of the International Polar Heritage Committee and has been to the South and North Pole several times.

The few research projects on historic sites and monuments that have been carried out so far have concentrated on whaling, especially in South Georgia. But more research on these and other historic sites in the South Pole is needed, Barr points out. In addition to economical and socio-historical perspectives and studies of technological development at whaling stations such as Whalers Bay and the stations in South Georgia, she calls for comparative analyses of huts that belong to different nations. Studies of survival techniques in Antarctica, preferably done in cooperation with scientists from other nations, would also be interesting.

Thomas Evensen | alfa
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