Iceland’s discredited Right boosts whaling

This video says about itself:

Whales With Names – Fin Whale and Calf

Fin whales are the second largest whales in the world. Japan thinks there are too many. They plan to kill a lot of them.

From the Sydney Morning Herald in Australia:

Iceland unveils steep whaling quota rise

January 28, 2009 – 3:19PM

Iceland’s government has unveiled a steep rise in its disputed commercial whale hunt, a sixfold increase allowing the killing of 150 fin whales and up to 150 minke whales a year.

Iceland, which pulled out of an international whaling moratorium in 2006 after observing it for 16 years, had a quota of nine fin whales and 40 minke whales per year.

But outgoing Fisheries Minister Einar Gudfinnsson said on Tuesday the government would follow the recommendations of the Marine Research Institute, which suggested a quota of 150 fin whales and 100 to 150 minke whales a year over the next five years.

“I think that whalers will be satisfied by this quota,” Gudfinnsson told AFP.

Gudfinnsson is a member of the centre-right Independence Party, whose coalition government with the left-leaning Social Democrats collapsed on Monday following protests over its handling of the economic crisis.

The Social Democrats and Left Greens, who oppose whaling, have been asked by President Olafur Ragnar Grimsson to form a new minority coalition after the one led by Prime Minister Geir Haarde, of the Independence Party, resigned.

Foreign Minister Ingibjoerg Solrun Gisladottir, the Social Democratic leader, had blasted Gudfinnsson in May for authorising whale hunting again this year.

Conservationists blasted the new quota.

“I hope that the minister who will replace Einar (Gudfinnsson) will have the courage to recall this decision,” said Arni Finnsson, of the Icelandic Natural Conservation.

Iceland and Norway are the only two countries in the world that authorise commercial whaling. Japan officially hunts whales for scientific purposes, although the whale meat is sold for consumption.

See also here.

Iceland’s Tourist Industry Condemns Whaling: here.

Iceland: whaling update March 2009: here.

Iceland urged to call off slaughter of endangered whales: here.

Whalergate – Secret Bush administration plan to legitimise Japanese whaling: here.

Why Japan’s whaling activities are not research: here.

Huge government subsidies for Norway & Japan whaling industries: here.

Dolphin strandings increase around the Cornish coast: here.

Rare sighting of Hector’s dolphin in Wellington harbour: here.

Two endangered Hector’s dolphins killed in fishing nets: here.

March 2012. Ecologists in New Zealand have shown for the first time that Marine Protected Areas – long advocated as a way of protecting threatened marine mammals – actually work. Their study, based on 21 years’ monitoring, reveals that a marine sanctuary off the coast of Christchurch has significantly improved survival of Hector’s dolphins – one of the rarest dolphins in the world: here.

September 2011: Measures to protect the world’s most endangered marine dolphins against fisheries bycatch are inadequate to prevent their extinction, an international marine conference has been told: here.

2 thoughts on “Iceland’s discredited Right boosts whaling

  1. Call for Obama to replace US whaling official

    Bush appointee undermines Obama whaling policy

    January 28, 2009

    Washington, United States — Just days after the inauguration of President Obama, appointees from the Bush administration who are still in place are already attempting to undermine his foreign policy on whaling.

    According to news reports [1] out of Hawaii, US Commissioner of the International Whaling Commission, Dr. Doug DeMaster, and the US Chair of the IWC, Dr William Hogarth, took part in closed-door negotiations with Japan over the weekend that could allow increased whaling off the coast of Japan in return for a marginal drop in the so-called “scientific” quota [2] of whales hunted in the Southern Ocean Whale Sanctuary.

    This trade-off will not benefit whale conservation – and could actually put additional endangered populations at risk. [3].

    Ironically, a search for “whaling” on the new Administration’s White House website brings no results and suggests searching for “dealing” instead [4].

    Greenpeace understands that President Obama did not anticipate whaling to be a priority at this early stage of his term, but his position on the campaign trail was unequivocal.

    Before last November’s election, Greenpeace USA asked Mr. Obama, “If you are elected president, what concrete steps will you take to convince Japan to stop

    He replied: “As president, I will ensure that the US provides leadership in enforcing international wildlife protection agreements, including strengthening the international moratorium on commercial whaling. Allowing Japan to continue commercial whaling is
    unacceptable.” [5]

    “President Obama has hit the ground running since 20 January and his words and action on climate change and other environmental issues are very welcome,” said Greenpeace

    International Whales Campaign coordinator Sara Holden. “We realise that whales were never going to be on the agenda in his first week, but the worrying news reports from Hawaii means that this issues needs to be address sooner rather than later”.

    Greenpeace is calling on President Obama to take just a few minutes to end this potentially damaging negotiation by ensuring a new IWC Commissioner is appointed with experience in high-level international negotiations to ensure the US position in these negotiations matches the agenda of the Obama Administration and the American people.

    Greenpeace is an independent, global campaigning organisation that acts to change attitudes and behaviour, to protect and conserve the environment, and to promote peace.

    [1] Washington Post story about the attempts to craft a deal:

    [2] Japan’s commercial whaling operation currently targets around 935 minke whales and 50 endangered fin whales each season in the Southern Ocean, under the guise of scientific research. A review of this programme by the IWC’s Scientific Committee found that it has failed to reach a single one of its objectives. The IWC has stated that it does not need the data produced by this programme and has repeatedly asked Japan to call it off.

    [3] Some populations of minke whale off the coast of Japan – known as J-Stock – are classified as endangered and are at risk from an increase in coastal whaling

    [4] – Screenshot from 27 January available at

    [5] Response from then presidential candidate Barack Obama available at:

    For further information or comment

    Jane Kochersperger, Media Officer, Greenpeace USA: +1 202 319 2493 Dave Walsh, Greenpeace International Media, in Ireland: +353 87 220 7023


  2. Pingback: Icelandic whale meat industry continuing | Dear Kitty. Some blog

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