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Venezuelan Scientists to Antarctica

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Venezuelan Scientists to Antarctica

Post by shammy on Tue Feb 12, 2008 9:43 am

12th February, 2008

President Hugo Chavez heralded a team of scientists Sunday who will participate in Venezuela's first expedition to Antarctica, where his government hopes to establish a research station.

Chavez welcomed the Venezuelan scientists to his Sunday radio and television program, saying the 15 experts were about to leave for Uruguay, where they will board an Uruguayan navy ship for the 45-day expedition.

The scientists will study a range of subjects including the effects of climate change in Antarctica, Science and Technology Minister Hector Navarro said.

"What we hope is to be able to build a base ... a permanent Venezuelan scientific station on the Antarctic continent," Navarro said on Chavez's program, where the scientists stood up one-by-one to introduce themselves.

Chavez, whose country is South America's top oil exporter, often speaks of the threat of global warming and blames heavy U.S. energy consumption as one of the main causes.

The expedition is being made possible through cooperation between the Venezuelan and Uruguayan navies, Navarro said. He said Venezuela is providing about $558,000 to finance the expedition, along with fuel for the Uruguayan ship and supplies.


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