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The demented dance about whaling rolls on

December 7, 2009

The dance has begun again between pro-whaling and pro-conservation interest across the world, this time prompted by the dance leader Fisheries Minister Lisbeth Berg Hansen with the announcement last week that Norway’s quota for minke whales will be set at 1286 next year, up from the previous quota of 885.

The dance steps become ever more perverse given that the hunt in 2009 had to be shut down for a period of time due to a lack of demand for whale meat.  The final kill for 2009 was 484 whales, the lowest number taken in Norway’s commercial whale hunt in a decade.

Chris Butler-Stroud, CEO of WDCS, has commented that “Such a huge quota defies both logic and any pretence of claims of sound management … demand for whale meat has dropped and no one is buying. This is nothing more than the empty rattling of harpoons, and it is clear these quotas are being set more for political show than anything else.”

Meanwhile the Japanese whaling fleet, that departed for the Southern Ocean a few short weeks ago, is facing mounting scrutiny for the amount that Japanese rate payers are subsidizing its operations.

One small glimmer of sanity creep in again with Peter Garrett, Australian Environment Minister telling the Sydney Morning Herald that the Norwegian announcement as unhelpful, coming in the midst of the highly contentious  and very protracted talks working towards a peace deal in the International Whaling Commission (IWC).

The insanity of this never seems to stop and so the demented dance of whaling rolls on.

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The dance has begun again between pro-whaling and pro-conservation interest across the world, this time prompted by the dance leader Fisheries Minister Lisbeth Berg Hansen with the announcement last week that Norway’s quota for minke whales will be set at 1286 next year, up from the previous quota of 885.

The dance steps become ever more perverse given that the hunt in 2009 had to be shut down for a period of time due to a lack of demand for whale meat.  The final kill for 2009 was 484 whales, the lowest number taken in Norway’s commercial whale hunt in a decade.

Chris Butler-Stroud, CEO of WDCS [http://www.wdcs.org/news.php?select=513, has commented that “Such a huge quota defies both logic and any pretence of claims of sound management … demand for whale meat has dropped and no one is buying. This is nothing more than the empty rattling of harpoons, and it is clear these quotas are being set more for political show than anything else.”

Meanwhile the Japanese whaling fleet, that departed for the Southern Ocean a few short weeks ago, is facing mounting scrutiny for the amount that Japanese rate payers are subsidizing its operations.

One small glimmer of sanity creep in again with Peter Garrett, Australian Environment Minister telling the Sydney Morning Herald [http://www.smh.com.au/environment/whale-watch/anger-as-norway-raises-whale-kill-20091206-kcwf.html] that the Norwegian announcement as unhelpful, coming in the midst of the highly contentious  and very protracted talks working towards a peace deal in the International Whaling Commission (IWC).

The insanity of this never seems to stop and so the demented dance of whaling rolls on.

One Comment leave one →
  1. Maureen Woodham permalink
    December 18, 2009 3:01 am

    It really is unacceptable that these arrogant countries continue killing sea mammals, be it whales, dolphins or seals. These mammals face sea pollution, ship collision, climate change, food shortage and many other dangers. Japan seems to think their economic power gives them the right to do anything they want in the seas and the Norweigans still think they are plundering vikings!

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