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Majestic fin whales

Icelandic whalers kill first fin whales in four years

As feared, whale hunters in Iceland have slaughtered at least two fin whales, the first...
Humpback whale underwater

Humpback whale rescued from shark net in Australia

A humpback whale and her calf have managed to escape after becoming entangled in a...
Humpback whales in Alaska

Pumps and conveyor belts. How could more whales help save us?

We are excited to announce backing for two ground-breaking research projects to assess the little...
Amazon River dolphin (Boto)

River dolphins observed playing with anaconda

Researchers in Bolivia recorded an unusual interaction between local rivers dolphins and an anaconda snake...
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  • All policy news
  • Create healthy seas
  • End captivity
  • Prevent deaths in nets
  • Stop whaling
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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...

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...

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...

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...

Cautious welcome for UK Government’s 25 year Environment Plan

The UK Government’s long awaited 25 Year Environment Plan for England was launched today and contains some optimistic comments regarding threats to whales and dolphins, but also some key omissions.

Amongst a raft of ideas and proposals, the Plan contains commitments to continue to champion the conservation of whales, dolphins and porpoises in the UK, to support the global ban on commercial whale hunting, and to lead calls for those countries that still engage in commercial whaling practices to stop.

‘WDC very much welcomes the commitments in the Plan’, says WDC bycatch policy manager, Sarah Dolman. ‘Whilst the UK Government has previously made a commitment to developing a strategy on the issue of bycatch (accidental deaths of whales and dolphins in fishing nets), we were disappointed that eliminating bycatch was not mentioned in the Plan.

‘In 25 years the UK can, and should, all but eliminate dolphin and porpoise bycatch in our waters. Not including this in the Environment Plan was an opportunity lost to state a tangible and achievable ambition for the UK to be world-leading in our efforts to lead by example.’

 

The Government´s commitment to continue its support of the international commercial whaling ban is also pleasing but, as WDC’s whaling policy manager Astrid Fuchs says, the UK Government has to back this up and provide legislation to put an end to the transport of whale meat through UK ports. WDC has been campaigning for such laws to be enacted for some time. ‘Stopping the whalers from using our ports will force them to use longer, much more expensive routes for their bloody trade, which will make whaling even less profitable than it already is and help bring an end to the killing of whales.’

In addition the UK Government has committed to develop plans around waste reduction and single-use plastics.  ‘The Government’s commitment to reducing waste in general and marine litter in particular should be a given’ says WDC plastic policy lead, Pine Eisfeld-Pierantonio.  ‘This pledge now must be backed up with a well-resourced and clearly outlined strategy for delivery, with transparent processes both for monitoring and progress reporting, as well as evidence-based decision making and clear milestones.’

 

The Plan also mentions establishing a new watchdog to monitor environmental issues, give the environment a voice and uphold environmental standards as the UK leaves the European Union.  WDC has joined with other leading environment charities to push for the Plan to be given real teeth to rival those of the EU’s Commission and the Courts. Delivering the UK Government’s ambitions in this 25 year plan will require resources, strong laws and sufficient financial backing. 

Visit WDC’s #NotWhaleFood site to see how you can help solve the plastic pollution problem.