2013 full of good news for whales

by Phil Kline

December 16, 2013

Humpback whale with young (Megapetra noveangliae). Buckelwal (Megapetra noveangliae).

© Ralf Kiefner / Greenpeace

This past year more than 186,000 supporters and whale lovers, answered Greenpeace’s call to contact decision makers here in DC asking them to help save whales, dolphins and a myriad of other marine species. If the whales could, Im sure they would add their hearty THANKS to mine.

Moving ocean conservation forward is always a slow-as-molasses process yet we made some significant headway in 2013.

As a result of Greenpeace actions and your participation we were able to deny the whalers of Iceland any ships to transport their ill-gotten whale meat. We also saw for the first time ever Icelands last shipment of whale meat, bound for Japan, returned to Iceland. The returned whale meat also came with a public commitment from the shipping companies to never carry any whale products in the future. As of today the Icelandic whalers have not found any shipping company that will transport their whale products.

On the seismic testing front for the proposed permits on our Southeast and Mid-Atlantic coasts weve won a little breathing space as the government has pushed back any permit review until sometime next year. This gives us more time to continue our fight to stop destructive seismic testing altogether.

Our work to reduce ship strikes on blue whales in southern California has now led to direct talks with the Department of the Navy discussing mitigation measures that the Navy can adopt. We are optimistic that this will lead to the needed shipping lane changes that will move the cargo ships out of the areas used by blue whales while on their summer feeding grounds in southern California.

Greenpeace will continue to push on all fronts to save the whales. Please continue to lend us your support.

Next year there will be another meeting of the International Whaling Commission (IWC), our seismic testing fight continues, our push for stronger sanctions on Iceland continues and finishing the ship strike job in southern California will keep us very busy. Were counting on your continued help.

Merry Fishmas!

Phil Kline

By Phil Kline

Phil is a senior oceans campaigner at Greenpeace USA. He is a recognized expert on oceans policy domestically and internationally, and has represented Greenpeace U.S. at International Whaling Commission (IWC) meetings and Western and Central Pacific Fisheries Commission meetings around the globe.

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