Pro-whalers may seize International Whaling Commission

Jun 8, 2006

The IWC was established in 1946 to conserve whales and regulate whaling. For the first time in its history, the pro-whaling nations have a voting majority. While this does not mean that Japan could overturn the ban on commercial whaling (which would require a ¾ vote), it does have serious implications for the work carried out at the meeting - - and for whales.

“Japan and Norway have already doubled their whaling quotas, and are planning to kill up to 2,000 whales this year. If they have their way, the pro-whaling nations could use this meeting to seize control of the agenda.  This would mean that current items such as whale welfare, conservation and other critical issues will be erased from the agenda.  The only discussion points will be ones that pro-whaling nations want to address.  We're determined to keep that from happening,” said Susan Sherwin, Campaigns Manager for WSPA USA. Sherwin, along with many colleagues from  the Whalewatch coalition, will be in St. Kitts for the IWC meeting.
The Whalewatch coalition, led by WSPA, is urging the IWC to address the welfare problems associated with modern day whaling activities and recognize that the whaling debate is not just about conservation, but also about animal suffering.

WSPA will be posting updates as the IWC meeting progresses, so please check this site frequently.

For additional information about whales and whaling, please click the links below.

Troubled Waters - a review of the welfare implications of modern whaling activities

Food for Thought: Competition between marine mammals and fisheries

Scientific Whaling - species chart

Humpback whale fact sheet

Minke whale fact sheet

Sperm whale fact sheet

Short-finned Pilot whale fact sheet

The RMS and Animal Welfare

Marine Noise

Whale watching vs. Whaling - The Economics

Whales vs. Fish

Why Whales and the IWC are Important to Caribbean Nations

Action Alert: Caribbean IWC Member Countries

Action Alert: Caribbean IWC Non-member Countries


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