Antarctic and Southern Ocean stories
The following stories relate to Tasmania’s Antarctic & Southern Ocean sector:
Six students at Hobart’s St Virgil’s College are heading for Antarctica after winning a competition to name Australia’s new Antarctic icebreaker. The Hobartians worked with six youngsters from Secret Harbour Primary in Perth, WA, to suggest the winning name RSV Nuyina (noy-yee-nah). The name means Southern Lights in palawa kani, the reconstructed language recognised by many Tasmanian Aborigines. More than two years ahead of the $1.9 billion ship’s expected completion, the name was announced by the Australian Antarctic Division in October after a nationwide competition that attracted almost 800 entries. ‘‘Using the name Nuyina for the Hobart-based ship recognises the long spiritual connection Tasmanian Aboriginal people have with the frozen continent, as the most southerly humans on the planet during the last ice age,’’ The Minister for the Environment, Josh Frydenberg, said.
6 November 2017, Edition 189
A Truth and Reconciliation Art Park addressing Tasmania’s greatest tragedy — the 30-year war between British invaders and Aboriginals; and its aftermath — is the centrepiece of a comprehensive proposal by MONA for Macquarie Point.
12 December 2016, Edition 179
Incat announced a new order in October from Virtu Ferries of Malta to design and build a 110-metre high-speed vehicle and passenger ferry. Chairman Robert Clifford said: “Virtu Ferries is amongst the oldest, most respected and most discerning fast-ferry operators in the world. They operate a variety of services throughout the Mediterranean and Adriatic, and this vessel is intended for their year-round lifeline service between Malta and the European Union.” The new catamaran will be the largest high-speed ferry in the Mediterranean. It will have a service speed up to 38 knots and will complete its regular journey from Malta to Sicily in around 90 minutes. Construction will commence in early 2017, with delivery scheduled at the end of 2018. Incat has a 500-strong workforce at its Hobart shipyard, with capacity to deliver two large ships a year. Virtu owner Francis Portelli said: “We simply want to provide our passengers and freight operators with the highest levels of service, reliability and comfort, yet at the same time operate an economical and environmentally sustainable high-speed service.”
3 November 2016, Tasmania’s Stories Edition 177
Hobart has won the right to host two major Antarctic conferences in 2020: the Scientific Committee on Antarctic Research Delegates’ Meeting and Open Science Conference plus the Council of Managers of National Antarctic Programs annual general meeting. Business Events Tasmania’s Stuart Nettlefold said: “The meetings alone will generate more than $6.4 million for the Tasmanian economy … running over two weeks and bringing more than 850 delegates from over 40 countries to the State. But the positive impacts go way beyond the immediate economic benefits. They provide Tasmania with a wonderful opportunity to showcase what the State has to offer on the international stage.” Hobart has also secured an imposing list of major business conferences this year and Launceston has also been gaining momentum as an event city, Mr Nettlefold said.
4 October 2016, Edition 176
Tourism business Chimu Adventures is offering a four-day tour from Sydney to coincide with Tasmania’s first Antarctic Festival.
2 August 2016, Edition 174
The Australian Government is to spend $255 million on its Antarctic programs over the next decade and will fund a National Climate Research Centre in Hobart.
3 May 2016, Edition 171
Antarctic guru Denzil Miller will spend 11 days this month brain storming on the future of the icy continent while cruising from Ushuaia, Argentina, to the Antarctic Peninsula with a hand-picked party of his peers from many nations. Dr Miller, who heads up Antarctic Tasmania in Hobart and served for many years as Director of the Commission for the Conservation of Marine Antarctic Resources, was thrilled to be invited to join what amounted to a world summit. “There are issues that need to be confronted on the future of the Antarctic Treaty and the people booked on the Akademik Ioffe have a formidable array of skill and experience for this task,” Dr Miller said. “As well as looking to the future, we will enjoy the present with opportunities for land visits to the peninsula as well as Curverville, Petermann and South Shetland islands. I thought I had made my last visit to Antarctica and I’m delighted to have been given an opportunity like this.”
1 March 2016, Tasmania’s Stories Edition 169
Hobart-based icebreaker Aurora Australis was driven on to rocks near Mawson Station while on a mission in February to resupply the Antarctic outpost. The Australian Antarctic Division said the ship had broken free of its mooring lines during a fierce blizzard on 24 February. The 67 expeditioners and crew escaped injury, but the ship’s hull was damaged on the rocky shore. The ship was refloated two days after the incident and most of the personnel are likely to be evacuated by a Japanese ice-breaker. On charter from P&O Maritime Services, Aurora Australis made its first Antarctic voyage in 1989 and is due to be replaced by a new $500 million icebreaker in 2019.
1 March 2016, Tasmania’s Stories Edition 169
The Prime Minister, Malcolm Turnbull, released details of Australia’s new Antarctic icebreaker in October during his first visit to Tasmania since taking over the national leadership. Speaking in Hobart, Mr Turnbull said the sophisticated ship, believed to carry a $500 million price tag, would offer scientists unprecedented and extended access to the Southern Ocean and Antarctica. The new ship will be faster, larger and stronger than the ageing Aurora Australis and will be capable of longer voyages. The unnamed ship will be built by icebreaker specialists in the northern hemisphere, but a shipyard has not yet been named.
3 November 2015, Edition 166
A new five-day festival, Spring THAW (The Hobart Antarctic Week) will be launched in September 2016 to celebrate Tasmania’s Antarctic connections. Initiated by the not-for-profit Mawson’s Hut Foundation, the biennial event will feature photographic and art competitions, an open day on the Aurora Australis and science-linked events aimed at drawing interstate and international audiences. The Hobart City Council approved THAW in September.
7 October 2015, Edition 165