India’s operational research stations at the South Pole
Part of: Prelims and Mains GS-III: Indian Economy and issues relating to planning, mobilization, of resources, growth, development and employment.
Context: One of India’s research stations in Antarctica, Maitri, which has been operational for over 35 years, needs urgent upgradation, work towards which is being done by the National Centre for Polar and Ocean Research (NCPOR).
- India has two operational research stations at the South Pole — Maitri and Bharati.
- Dakshin Gangotri, the first station built before 1985, is now operating as a base transit camp mainly for supplying goods.
- Built during 1988-1989 to operate for a period of ten years, Maitri is an important station that allows scientists to collect geological, meteorological and geophysical data. This data is useful in understanding and drawing timely inferences about climate change and other scientific areas.
India and Oceans:
India is among the few nations to have dedicated ocean missions.
- Two years ago, India announced a Rs 4,000-crore Deep Ocean Mission to be spearheaded by the MoES.
- India has also announced projects that will contribute to the Blue Economy, envisioned over the next decade.
- The US, UK, France, Chile, Belgium, Australia, and Germany are among the leading nations with multiple research stations at the South Pole.
- With the United Nations has declared 2021–2030 as the Decade of Ocean Science for Sustainable Development, there are a number of initiatives, including improving coastal livelihoods, protecting sea and ocean, ocean literacy, and restoring coral reefs, aimed at increasing the resourcefulness of the oceans.