MONTEVIDEO – A Uruguayan navy ship departed from the port of Montevideo on its annual voyage to deliver supplies to Uruguay’s scientific base in Antarctica, the government said.
The ROU 106 Vanguardia weighed anchor with a crew of 72 bound for the Jose Artigas Scientific Base on St. George Island, hauling 40 tons of food, supplies and parts along with 250,000 liters (66,000 gallons) of diesel fuel, the Office of the President said on its Web site.
The fuel will be used “to generate electric power and operate vehicles” at the base and, for the first time, to create “a reserve stock for contingencies in the new fuel-tank farm” at the facility.
The station uses roughly 200,000 liters of fuel annually.
About 60 percent of the budget of the Uruguayan Antarctic Institute, which manages the Artigas Base, goes toward fuel purchases.
Besides delivering supplies, the Vanguardia will monitor “fishing vessels in the area according to the recommendations from the Commission for the Preservation of Live Marine Antarctic resources, of which Uruguay is a member, to discourage non-authorized fishing operations and to protect marine ecosystems,” the government said.