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Antarctic Ocean Alliance Call For World's Biggest Marine Protection Zone In Antarctica (PICTURES)

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ANTARCTIC OCEAN
Antarctica Protection Zone Proposals | alamy

A global coalition of scientists and campaigners is calling for the waters of the Antarctic to be turned into the world's biggest marine protection zone.

Currently only the Antarctic land mass is legally protected but the waters that surround it, which is teeming with marine life, is not.

Now The Antarctic Ocean Alliance wants to safeguard 10,000 species, including emperor penguins, killer whales and colossal squid. Many of the animals cannot be found anywhere else on Earth.

The Alliance, consisting of environmental groups such as Greenpeace, wants industrial fishing to be banned in 19 areas of the sea. It has warned that as global fishing stocks deplete, fishing boats are heading southwards.

Antarctica is vital for measuring climate change, as its ice cores provide data on greenhouse gas levels and temperatures. All activity apart from scientific research would be banned in the proposed conservation areas.

The Alliance director, Steve Campbell, explained that we need a reserve network "on a scale that hasn't been done anywhere else on the planet before" because of the "enormous value of the Antarctic wilderness to science and to humanity".

Here is a slideshow of some of the Antarctic inhabitants that the protection zone would hope to protect:

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