H.Con.Res. 51: Recognizing the 50th anniversary of the signing of the Antarctic Treaty

H.Con.Res. 51

Recognizing the 50th anniversary of the signing of the Antarctic Treaty

Rep. Pat Tiberi

September 30, 2009 (111th Congress, 1st Session)

Staff Contact

Floor Situation

H.Con.Res. 51 is being considered under suspension of the rules, requiring a two-thirds vote for passage. The legislation was introduced by Rep. Pat Tiberi (R-OH) on February 12, 2009.

Bill Summary

H.Con.Res. 51 resolves that Congress:

•  "Recognizes that the Antarctic Treaty has successfully ensured the "use of Antarctica for peaceful purposes only and the continuance of international harmony" continuously for the past half century; and

•  "Encourages diverse international and interdisciplinary collaboration in the Antarctic Treaty Summit to identify lessons and stories from 50 years of international cooperation under the Antarctic Treaty that have legacy value for humankind."



The Antarctic Treaty was signed by 12 countries in Washington, DC, on December 1, 1959. It was established to develop international cooperation on the basis of freedom of scientific investigation in Antarctica. The treaty was originally signed by Argentina, Australia, Chile, France, Norway, the United Kingdom, Belgium, Japan, South Africa, the USSR, and the U.S. The Antarctic Treaty also became the first nuclear arms agreement in our world by establishing that "any nuclear explosions in Antarctica and the disposal there of radioactive waste material shall be prohibited." The Antarctic Treaty now has 46 nation signatories.