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More important ocean areas for whales and dolphin protection identified

Scientists and observers from many different countries have identified and mapped 36 new Important Marine...

Whale meat fetches record high at Japan auction

Sei whale meat is being sold at a record high in Japan according media reports...

Rescuers find young girl’s body surrounded by dolphins

Reports from South Africa about a tragic drowning off Llandudno beach, Cape Town say that...
The Yushin Maru catcher ship of the Japanese whaling fleet injures a whale with its first harpoon attempt, and takes a further three harpoon shots before finally killing the badly injured fleeing whale. Finally they drowned the mammal beneath the harpooon deck of the ship to kill it.  Southern Ocean.  07.01.2006

Moves to overturn whaling ban rejected

Last week, the 68th meeting of the International Whaling Commission (IWC, the body that regulates...
All policy news
  • All policy news
  • Create healthy seas
  • End captivity
  • Prevent deaths in nets
  • Stop whaling
  • Strandings

Minke whale hunts stop in Iceland

Iceland’s commercial hunt of minke whales has ended for this year. The common minke whale is the...
Port River dolphins

New report reveals 100,000 dolphins and small whales hunted every year

When you hear the words ‘dolphin hunts’ it’s likely that you think of Japan or...

Doubts remain after Icelandic Marine Institute claims slaughtered whale was a hybrid not a blue

Experts remain sceptical of initial test results issued by the Icelandic Marine Institute, which indicate...

Japan set to resume commercial whaling

Reports from Japan suggest that the government they will formally propose plans to resume commercial...

End the whale hunts! Icelandic fin whaler isolated as public mood shifts

Here’s a sight I hoped never again to witness. A boat being scrubbed and repainted...

Australian Government to block Japanese whaling proposal

Japanese Government officials have reportedly confirmed that they will propose the resumption of commercial whaling...

Pregnant whales once again a target for Japanese whalers

Figures from Japan's whaling expedition to Antarctica during the 2017/18 austral summer have revealed that...

Did Icelandic whalers really kill a blue whale?

*Warning - this blog contains an image that you may find upsetting* They say a...

Icelandic whalers breach international law and kill iconic, protected whale by mistake

Icelandic whalers out hunting fin whales for the first time in three years appear to...

Norway's whaling season begins

April 1st saw the start of the whaling season in Norway. Despite a widely-accepted international moratorium...

Norway increases whaling quota despite declining demand

Norway's government has announced an increase in the number of minke whales that can be...

Icelandic fin whale hunting to resume

Iceland’s only fin whaling company, Hvalur hf,  announced today that it will resume fin whaling...

Japanese parliament considers resumption of commercial whale hunting

Today, the Japanese parliament will consider moves by the government to resume commercial whale hunting.

Currently, Japan gets around the international ban on commercial whaling via a loophole in the rules that allows the slaughter of whales for scientific research. Japan conducts these ‘research’ hunts in the Southern and Pacific oceans, and the proposed new bill will enshrine funding for research whaling into the Japanese national budget. The demand for whale meat in Japan has fallen and the government subsidise the industry.

Animal welfare groups in Japan have criticised the potential new whaling law, stating that the proposed bill is ‘designed only to continue research whaling no matter what the cost — to either the whales, Japan’s international reputation, or to the Japanese taxpayer’.

Japan has been under pressure from the international community over its current so-called scientific whale hunts. These are seen by many as merely commercial whaling in disguise anyway as little scientific knowledge of any value is gathered from the hunts, and much of the meat ends up on sale anyway.

Just days ago, a committee of scientific experts at the International Whaling Commission (the global body that regulates whaling) backed previous conclusions by an independent panel that the North Pacific hunts were ‘currently unjustified, and should be halted until more research has been conducted’.

In 2014, the International Court of Justice (ICJ) ruled  that Japan’s Antarctic whaling programme in the Southern Ocean was illegal and had to stop as it had failed to yield any meaningful scientific results.

As recently as this January, the European Union issued a formal statement of concern regarding Japan’s whaling practices. The strongly worded letter highlighted the lack of scientific justification for the Antarctic hunts, and also criticized Japan’s decision to start the new ‘research’ hunts in the North Pacific in 2017.

The scientific value of this slaughter has also been called into question by the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN) – the global authority on the status of the natural world. 

On the 12th June Japanese hunting vessels left Abashiri Port in Hokkaido to begin killing up to killing170 minke whales and 134 Sei whales to determine aspects such as sex and age.

Yasuhiro Sanada, fisheries researcher at Waseda University in Tokyo, said whaling was a matter of pride for the Japanese. Many in the country see whale hunting as a cultural right, but large scale, industrial whaling is a relatively new phenomenon in Japan, starting after World War II when animal protein was in short supply.

As part of our ongoing campaign to stop whaling, WDC and Care2  submitted a petition to the European Parliament containing 270,000 signatures, calling on the EU to raise the issue of whaling in its trade negotiations with Japan and to say ‘no’ to a Free Trade Agreement while Japan kills whales.

The EU Commission has responded saying that whaling will not even be discussed during the trade talks, so we are asking the public to make their views clear on whaling by sending a tweet or an email to Cecilia Malmström, the EU Commissioner for Trade and the person in charge of the EU’s trade negotiations.

IF YOU’D LIKE TO SUPPORT OUR CAMPAIGN, YOU CAN ALSO MAKE A DONATION. THANK YOU.