Since 1986, it has been established that around 33,000 whales have been killed. Illegal whaling has been rampant for more than 25 years, which caused many species of whales to never fully recover. In the United States, the North Atlantic Right Whale has a lonely population of about 350! The blue whales of the Antarctic are at less than 1% of their original abundance. The West Pacific Grey Whale populations are the most endangered of the world’s great whales, hovering on the edge of extinction with just over 100 individuals remaining!
Non-profit organizations such as Green Peace and Sea Shepherd have fought continuously against this needless slaughter of one of the most magnificent creatures on the planet. In 1986, there was a moratorium established by the United Nations to restock the depleting sources of whales for commercial whaling. The International Whaling Commission (IWC) has been since working on negotiating possible quotas on commercial whaling to some success. However, a few countries, namely Japan, Norway and Iceland continue to ignore this moratorium on commercial whaling and every year kill thousands of whales to allegedly feed a black market of illegal whale meat.
Minke and Humpback whales come right up to boats in Australian waters and will be easy targets for Japanese “scientific” whaling ships. Whale watching has become a $273 million industry annually in Australia and Japanese whaling in Antarctic waters is a viable threat and may pose problems for this thriving industry in this area and around the world.
Obviously, all whaling worldwide should stop immediately! Moreover, no whale populations have come even close to recovering from 200 years of commercial whaling. The cruelty associated with killing whales is extreme as there are limited ways to bring down an animal that big. Repeated harpooning, grenades and other explosives, as well as butchering the animal while it is alive and in agony. Because of this, whales suffer excruciating deaths and for what reason? For centuries, meat from whales has been an important source of food and vitamins in different countries. It is understandable that back then consumption of whale meat was an important part of these peoples’ culture, but now it has become a high price restaurant business. At this day and age it is not necessary for humans to consume whales for survival. They are not just a “big fish” that can be served up in school cafeterias.
I would also like to mention that the «rite of passage» ritual in the Faroe Islands which involves young men killing the defenseless creatures to prove their manhood and growing up is simply sickening. Why would this be considered humane to simply kill for sport just to prove that they are now «men»? This should be banned immediately!!!!
People!!! You are no longer living in the past where barbaric, ignorant and outdated norms are the way of life. It is already 2012 and it’s time to change old dogmas, traditions and mindsets to a new intelligent approach to our changing world. I am asking people of power and status to please wake up and accept reality, start thinking and feeling a different way; like people of a new era. Please separate the earning of money and commercialism from the most important thing; saving the planet or whatever is left of it! Understand that if the balance of our world is shifted, we will all suffer for it. We are all interconnected in the world and our lives all depend on each other. Stop the slaughtering and consuming of these highly intelligent, defenseless and sentient beings!
Additionally, whales now also face serious environmental challenges such as noise, chemical pollution, seismic and naval sonar, entanglement in nets, global warming seriously affecting plankton availability, ship strikes and habitat loss in addition to them being slow breeders with a high infant mortality rate. Whales are actually highly beneficial to our oceans as their excrement feeds plankton which in turn feeds ALL marine life like fish and oxygenates the water. Without plankton these fish die from lack of food and suffocate from lack of oxygen in the water. There is already a significant decline in plankton all over the world. If whales are now removed from the equation, plankton levels will decline even further.
The oceans are already in a state of collapse. Three fourths of global fish stocks are suffering from overfishing and 90% of top marine predators are already gone. The ocean will keep on degrading to the point where it is dead (as are at least 160 areas already known as “dead zones” around the world), the availability of oxygen in the atmosphere will be severely diminished also since we rely on oceans for 70-80% of OUR oxygen. Furthermore, the ocean will release CO2 in amounts far greater than all global fossil fuel burning combined. This poses a life threatening impact for ALL earth dwellers.
The fact described below is utterly outrageous and without any doubt will lead to unspeakable suffering and widespread and devastating consequences to wildlife on enormous scale.
Low frequency active sonar (LFA sonar) is a dangerous technology that has the potential to kill, deafen and/or disorient whales, dolphins and all marine life, as well as humans, in the water. It is the loudest sound ever put into the world’s oceans. The US Navy was planning to deploy it in 80% of the world’s oceans at a level of 240 decibels in order to detect quit submarines (jetliner during take-off «only» creates up to 150 decibels, which causes eardrum rupture if not protected). Some other countries have similar technology. In 1996 LFA sonar usage during NATO exercises in Mediterranean was correlated with stranding of beaked whales.
The Navy is now testing the use of high frequency underwater sound in Hawaii, the California and Atlantic Coasts, and in the Gulf of Mexico for some not clearly specified government purposes. According to their estimates it will irreversibly deafen more than 15,900 whales and dolphins and kill 1,800 more over the next 5 years. Whales and dolphins totally depend on using sound to navigate and live. In fact using sound is one of their unique abilities and is absolutely necessary for their very survival and without it they will simply die.
Their lungs literally «explode» under exposure to these powerful waves.
We must demand to immediately stop these dangerous and irresponsible exercises. Whales and dolphins are irreplaceable part of marine life and global ecosystem as a whole.
Protect whales until this shameful and unnecessary slaughter has been stopped and whales can again roam the seas in freedom. What a tragic loss that would be and a testament to human stupidity and greed.