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This Happened

This Happened—December 14: First Steps On The South Pole

Arriving by ship, skis and dog-powered sleighs, Norwegian explorer Roald Amundsen arrived where no human had ever set foot, exactly 111 years ago today.

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Sex In Antarctica: When Things Heat Up For Iced-In Researchers

Argentina's Antarctic bases are staffed by isolated and often young scientists confined in close quarters.

MARAMBIO BASE The Hercules plane expected to arrive at this Argentine-run base in the Antarctic will bring clothes, food, medicines, vehicle parts and ... condoms.

Sex in the Antarctic is like the wind: nobody sees it but everyone talks about it.

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Penguins Beware: China's Super-Rich Flock To Antarctica

A chilly bit of 'wealth flaunting' in time for the Chinese New Year.

For China's expanding class of super-rich, the search is always on for the most exclusive family travel destination for the Chinese New Year. This year has sparked a rush to a particularly cool (ok, cold) new spot: Antarctica.

Less about exploration or adventure, the Mandarin-language website The Paper reports that the real motivation is simply that few can afford it. So, flaunting one's wealth in China now comes with penguins, it appears.

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The Antarctic, One Last Chance To 'Do Right' By Mother Nature

The Antarctic, one of the last, unspoiled parts of the natural world, will, like the Amazon, face man's destructive onslaught unless states take action quickly.

BUENOS AIRES — Beijing recently hosted the 40th Antarctic Treaty Consultative Meeting, a chance for signatory states to agree on how to better protect what may be the last bit of the planet with vast, pristine natural territories. It is no easy task.

The reader may or may not know that Antarctica (and the waters, ice and islands around it, collectively known as The Antarctic) is "governed" in a collaborative fashion through two legal instruments foreseen in the Antarctic Treaty system. Those instruments are based on the fundamental principles of promoting international peace, scientific investigation and environmental protection.

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Are Penguins Super-Birds, Immune To Avian Flu?

ANTARCTICA — Researchers have detected a new kind of bird flu in Adelie penguins for the first time, yet the virus does not seem to make them sick.

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By The Numbers: Record Cold, Steaming Rice And More

The coldest recorded temperature, a long test for Fukushima rice and other ways to measure the news that counted.


Antarctic Rescue, Cyclone Bejisa, Robber v. Broom

An operation to rescue the passengers of the Russian ship Akademik Shokalsky was launched this morning, as a Chinese helicopter attempts to ferry tourists and scientists to an Australian ice-breaker, Russia Today reports. The Shokalksky has been trapped in ice since Christmas eve and several evacuation attempts had failed due to poor weather conditions. By midday, CNN reports that all 52 passengers had been successfully rescued.

The head of the UN peacekeeping mission in South Sudan Hilde Johnson has called for an end to fighting between supporters of President Salva Kiir and those of his sacked deputy Riek Machar, BBC News reports. Meanwhile, Kiir declared a state of emergency in two of the country’s states on Wednesday, ordering the regular army to fight dissident rebels, according to the Sudan Tribune.

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