US backing plan to reinstate commercial whaling?!?!

by Mike Gaworecki

February 26, 2010

In a stunning instance of what can only be called collective cognitive dissonance, a small working group of the International Whaling Commission has just proposed we reinstate commercial whaling in order to save the whales.

UPDATE: Click this link to tell President Obama, Say no to commercial whaling!

Make no mistake: This proposal has nothing to do with saving whales, but is instead all about protecting the whaling industries of just a few obstinate countries who insist on destroying these amazing creatures. This proposal is the most serious threat to the moratorium on commercial whaling that we’ve seen since Greenpeace fought for and won the moratorium in the 80s.

Greenpeace: whale slaughter in Southern Ocean
Greenpeace activists witness the killing of whales in the Southern Ocean by the Yushin Maru and the Kyo Maru No.1 ships of the Japanese whaling fleet. © Greenpeace / Jeremy Sutton-Hibbert

While some US officials have been insisting that they are not supporting the proposal, we are very concerned about reports that the U.S. IWC Commissioner is not only supporting it but in fact pushing other countries to support it as well. The US position will be clarified at a meeting of the International Whaling Commission in St. Petersburg, FL next Tuesday and Wednesday.

Greenpeace vehemently opposes the proposal because:

  1. It would allow whaling to take place in the Southern Ocean whale sanctuary. Not only would the killing of whales there continue, it would be legitimized.
  2. By legitimizing all whaling, the proposal would secure the future of whaling instead of seeking to phase it out. With a single stroke, this proposal would reverse nearly three decades of progress in protecting endangered whale species.
  3. It will set interim quotas – the number of whales each country is allowed to catch – based on political need, not scientific evidence. Nothing could be more disastrous to fragile whale populations than caving to political pressure rather than listening to scientists about the best way to protect healthy whale populations.
  4. Adding insult to injury, the proposal would pass the costs of regulating whaling on to all members of the IWC, meaning that the taxpayers of even anti-whaling countries will be forced to support whaling operations.

You can read the full proposal for yourself online here.

We’re aiming to kill this atrocious, unscientific proposal before it even gets voted on, which will be at the IWC’s annual meeting in June. We’ll need your aid and support if we’re to achieve that goal, though.

The first step? Get the word out about this proposal to reinstate the slaughter of whales for commercial purposes. Post a link to this blog on your , Twitter, MySpace, or on your own blog.

We’re working on an action alert that you can use to fax President Obama and tell him you expect him to reject this proposal and help save the whales instead of the whalers. The ironic thing about all this is that the United States has a long history of advocating for whale conservation. If you really want to send the president a message right away, you can sign our petition urging the Obama Administration to continue the U.S.’s legacy of protecting whales.

Rest assured that we’ll have more for you to do very soon. This is an all-hands-on-deck moment, no doubt.

UPDATE: Click this link to tell President Obama, Say no to commercial whaling!

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