Research · Ecological Management · Environmental Impact Analysis

Environmental Assessment of the U.S. Antarctic Program

Major features and location of USAP stations on the Antarctic continentHow can the National Science Foundation implement environmental protection measures for U.S. Antarctic Program (USAP) facilities and operations?

A programmatic environmental impact statement was prepared that evaluated four alternatives for implementing environmental protection measures for the USAP. These measures ranged from continuing USAP activities at the 1989-90 level of environmental protection to making environmental protection and the health and safety of personnel the overriding considerations for all USAP activities.

The assessment found that the alternative of completing ongoing safety, environment, and health initiatives and streamlining the USAP by reducing the number of support personnel would accomplish the objectives of reducing the amounts of materials brought to Antarctica and the wastes generated at USAP facilities. This alternative would result in less impact on land and water resources. Long-term reductions in station personnel would also reduce the impacts of air emissions and wastewater discharges in comparison to other alternatives considered.

National Science Foundation. 1991. Final Supplemental Environmental Impact Statement for the United States Antarctic Program. Office of Polar Programs, Washington, D.C.

For more information, contact:
Greg Zimmerman (, 865-574-5815)
Lance McCold (, 865-574-5216)

Revised: 8/16/05

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