The amount of diamond mines currently being exploited has been steadily decreasing for several years. According to experts, the worldwide diamond production will stagnate around 2020. This is the reason why speculation has arisen around the topic of diamond exploitation on Antarctica. Its bottom is suspected to contain an enormous amount of diamonds. Is a diamond mine on Antarctica feasible? Scientists working on the subject say it is not possible yet.
Obstacles and Feasibility.
An international treaty of an indefinite duration, signed by 50 countries, forbids the exploration and exploitation of natural resources in Antarctica. Experts say this inhibition could be revised in the coming century. A major factor in this decision is climate change and we don’t know whether it will be easier or harder to mine for diamonds in an altered climate.
Geological and mineral research proves that Antarctica harnesses an incredible wealth of natural resources. Not only diamonds but coal, iron ore, manganese, copper, uranium and petroleum are present in vast amounts. But even if the international prohibition would be lifted mining the South Pole doesn’t look realistic.
Contrary to the slightly warmer and more accessible North Pole, miners would face constant hurricane like blizzards. Not mentioning the huge ice mountains or the fact they would have to drill through icecaps several thousand meters thick. Big questions marks remain in our quest to mine Antarctica.
What about the North Pole?
Heading for the North Pole? You will find that the situation there is slightly better but the operation remains a logistical nightmare considering the freezing cold. When the permafrost is thawed the possibility for exploration would increase, although the thaw could create unforeseen difficulties. Due to lack of new diamond mines worldwide, prices of diamond are suspected to rise further in the coming years. The option of mining for diamonds in Antarctica will probably resurface.