Saving the Whales


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Yorkshire, UK
Quite a surprise - the so-called "Berlin Initiative" has actually been voted through. This means that the IWC will now actively seek to conserve whales, rather than simply dictate numbers caught. It is, essentially, a movement not simply to end commercial fishing interests, but also a mandate to protect both large whales and small whales (including dolphins and porpoises) from the processes of fighing (many thousands die in nets each year).

One problem - not reported - is that it remains to be seen as to whether the IWC will actually be able to enforce the ruling with any legal abilities. Essentially the IWC has been seen as a voluntary commission. Certainly, Japan and Norway will seek to escape it.

For real teeth you need to invoke CITES - which is an international agreement for the protection of endangered species, which - quite importantly - is thoroughly supported by the USA.

Anyway, here are some links covering the IWC ruling, with some supporting articles:

Anti-whalers claim 'landmark' victory for conservation - New Scientist

Whaling commission votes for conservation -

Greater protection for whales agreed - BBC

And background info:

Extinction nears for whales and dolphins

Nets 'kill 800 cetaceans a day'

Why dolphins get trapped in nets
I'm very glad for this. Iceland, Norway and Japan have all been kicking out the International Whaling Commission and making it a laughing stock for years. And as these countries are *not* involved in official commercial hunting (according to themselves) then the whole issue of catching whales for 'scientific purposes' should never be a national issue in the first place. Unless these countries want to admit that they always have been commercial whaling in the first place. We all know they have but they only got away with it because of evading the issue by proxy.
Nice to see the dolphins will get protection from the nets problem as well. thousands are killed each year in the English Channel alone. Hate to think what the world-wide statistics are.
Brian have you got a link for todays news? They say the IWC is going to break up and the whaling nations are breaking out to whale commerically again. You covering that?
It's all a big fight down there. You keep us informed of the outcome. Sure I won't miss it but just in case.
Its sad enough when we get dead dolphins and porpoises washed up on the coast around here. I don't know why anyone would want to kill them on purpose or object to cutting down causes of accidents.