Russia able to take oil from UK-claimed Antarctica: ‘The West will not cease Putin’ | UK | News | EUROtoday

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The UK faces the specter of Russia extracting oil in areas of the Antarctic claimed by Britain, a Conservative MP tells the Daily Express.

Russia has found oil and gasoline reserves, in accordance with proof given to the Commons Environment Audit Committee (EAC) final week.

The reserves reportedly maintain the equal of 511 billion barrels of oil, 10 occasions the North Sea’s 50-year output.

Antarctica has been protected by the 1959 Antarctic Treaty, which prohibits any useful resource extraction.

Conservative MP and former Chairman of the Defence Select Committee, Tobias Ellwood, instructed the Daily Express: “Russia’s blatant prospecting for oil in Antarctica (in breach of the Treaty) reflects Putin’s growing confidence to test international norms – with every expectation the West will be too risk-averse to stand in its way.

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“Its actions and intentions should be referred to as out earlier than Moscow wins the battle for the oil reserves within the land mass which isn’t ruled by anyone nation.”

His warning echoes that of other experts who fear China could also exploit the resources in the region.

Klaus Dodds, professor of geopolitics at Royal Holloway College, told the EAC: “The Antarctic Treaty faces renewed challenges not least from bad-faith actor Russia and increasingly assertive China.

“Rosgeo has been engaging in seismic surveys and other related surveying work … Russia’s activities need to be understood as a decision to undermine the norms associated with seismic survey research, and ultimately a precursor for forthcoming resource extraction.”

Sergey Kozlov, chief geologist at PMGE, a subsidiary of Rosgeo, said last week: “The data obtained during the new expedition… will make it possible to substantially clarify our expectations of the oil and gas-bearing prospects of the Antarctic Shelf Seas.”

A Foreign Office spokesman instructed The Telegraph: “The UK is totally dedicated to the Antarctic Treaty and its prohibition of economic mineral exploitation.

“Last 12 months, all Parties to the Antarctic Treaty reaffirmed their ongoing dedication to work collectively beneath the agreed framework, which reserves Antarctica for scientific use solely.”

Russia’s exploration of assets within the Antarctic is probably going motivated by the hit dealt to its vitality sector by Ukrainain strikes on oil and gasoline services.

Putin’s forces have additionally focused Ukrainian vitality infrastructure throughout the conflict.