Whales are magnificent creatures. Well known for their intelligence and tender nature, they are iconic representatives of marine biodiversity. Yet corrupt and reckless practices still threaten whales today. To ensure we have healthy and diverse oceans, we need to protect the ocean’s gentle giants.
Although there's a worldwide ban on commercial whaling, whales still aren't safe. They face many threats such as being hunted illegally, climate change, water pollution, noise pollution, overfishing and being struck by ships.
Despite these threats, some nations – particularly Japan, Norway and Iceland – want to resume commercial whaling. An increasing number of nations in the International Whaling Commission (IWC) are voting for an immediate resumption of commercial whaling. This is a not a result of a changing world opinion; it is because the Fisheries Agency of Japan is operating what it calls a 'vote consolidation program'. This provides fisheries aid to developing countries in return for their vote for a resumption of commercial whaling at the IWC.
The history of whaling is a history of serial disasters - the depletion of one species after another, by an industry operating in a circle of greed. Greenpeace along with other dedicated conservation groups are fighting to stop the slaughter. Read more on the situation in Japan, Norway and Iceland.
Commercial whaling – in all its forms – must be permanently brought to an end. Greenpeace is working within Japan, where the decision to end Japan’s controversial whaling operations will ultimately be made. We’re also campaigning for the International Whaling Commission to be turned into a true whale conservation body. Finally, our work to end overfishing, marine destruction and climate change, strives to protect the world’s whales.
The corrupt and controversial whaling industry is on its last legs, and now is the time to ramp up pressure in Japan. Two Greenpeace activists known as 'The Tokyo Two' were convicted after exposing corruption in the Japanese whaling industry. Their case has been vital in bringing unprecedented pressure on the government to end whaling.