The State Department sent out a press release today detailing the upcoming first-ever joint session of the Antarctic Treaty Consultative Meeting and the Arctic Council.

The meeting will be held on April 6 in Baltimore, Maryland, marking the start of the 32nd Antarctic Treaty Consultative Meeting (ATCM). The ATCM will take place during the fiftieth anniversary of the signing of the Antarctic Treaty, which, as the first multilateral arms control treaty, preserved the continent as a place for peaceful scientific research. The ATCM will also mark the end of the 2007-2009 International Polar Year.

Over 400 diplomats involved in both Arctic and Antarctic affairs will attend the ATCM, along with Antarctic program managers, experts, and scientists from 47 countries. They will discuss issues ranging from environmental conservation to tourism, with a proposal to more strictly regulate tourist vessels that visit the Antarctic.

Link: Official site of the Antarctic Treaty Commission Meeting

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