Korean pseudo-scientific whaling


This video is called Antarctica – Minke Whale.

From Wildlife Extra:

South Korea launches alleged ‘Scientific whaling’ to add to their ‘bycatch’ – ARSE

South Korea plans to copy the Japanese ‘Scientific whaling programme’

NZ opposes South Korean whaling proposal

July 2012. South Korea have announced plans to launch ‘scientific whaling’ of Minke whales, similar to that run by Japan, but potentially even more damaging to whales as they will target Minke near the shores of Korea, a small and vulnerable population.

Already catching 200 whales per year as ‘bycatch

Korea already catches an estimated 200 Minke whales per year by ‘accident’ (They must be incredibly careless). If the Korean scientific community are so keen to get hold of some whales for science, they already have plenty to choose from.

‘Accidental bycatch’

In 2007 Wildlife Extra reported on the improbable number of whales caught by the Korean fishing industry as ‘accidental bycatch’, some 200 per year. Though it is illegal to directly hunt minke whales in South Korea, those caught in fishing nets can be killed and sold as ‘bycatch’ if officially reported. Economic incentives make such pursuits attractive, as individual whales were thought to fetch as much as $100,000.

The 2007 study, involving numerous researchers, was led by Scott Baker of Oregon State University. Researchers estimated that the true number of Minke whales that probably passed through Korean markets from 1999 to 2003 was around 827 individuals, or nearly twice the number in official reports.

‘If the mortality is really twice as great as the number reported to the government and to the International Whaling Commission, it has major implications for the survival of the species,’ Baker said. ‘Researchers who have done sighting surveys of minke whales report difficulty in even locating the whales and it has been hard to reconcile the small numbers sighted at sea with the numbers reported via bycatch.

New Zealand speaks out

New Zealand’s Foreign Minister, Murray McCully, has condemned the Korean announcement of an intention to commence a so-called scientific whaling programme in the North West Pacific as “a serious setback for those who are committed to conservation of the species”.

Mr McCully says he hopes Korea will carefully consider the concerns of countries like New Zealand before making any final decisions.

Accidental bycatch

“Whales in these waters are already heavily targeted by Japan, and large numbers are also caught as by-catch by Korea. Any action by Korea to commence whaling in these waters following this announcement will have serious consequences,” Mr McCully says.

‘Scientific’ arse

“This initiative will also place further pressure on the IWC, already an organisation with difficulty sustaining itself as a credible international institution. The portrayal of this initiative as a ‘scientific’ programme will have no more credibility than the so-called scientific programme conducted by Japan, which has long been recognised as commercial whaling in drag.

“In this day and age there is simply no need to kill whales in order to conduct effective research. New Zealand has raised its voice against this proposal at the IWC meeting and I have instructed that our Ambassador in Seoul take immediate steps to register our serious concerns with the Korean government. It is to be hoped that Korea will now give serious consideration to the widespread and strong objections being raised,” Mr McCully says.

UPDATE 6 December 2012:

South Korea drops plans to resume whaling

Proposals to conduct ‘scientific’ whale hunts similar to those carried out by Japan provoked storm of international criticism

8 thoughts on “Korean pseudo-scientific whaling

  1. South Korean peace activist arrested

    Thursday 05 July 2012

    Shouting “Long live reunification,” a South Korean activist stepped over the line dividing the North and South, and then was promptly arrested today.

    The stunt by 68-year-old No Su hui, who spent more than three months in North Korea without his government’s approval, was designed to draw attention to the division of the Korean peninsula.

    Turning around to face crowds of cheering North Koreans before stepping over the line, Mr No raised his arms and shouted “long live reunification,” while carrying a white unified Korea flag in his right hand and a bouquet of flowers in his left.

    He is vice-chairman of South Korea’s Pan-Alliance for Korea’s Reunification.

    North Korea has accused South Korean President Lee Myung bak of being a traitor to the cause of reunification.

    http://morningstaronline.co.uk/news/content/view/full/121060

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  4. South Korean auto workers begin strike action

    Some 45,000 workers at South Korea’s Hyundai Motors and 30,000 workers at affiliate Kia Motors were to stage their first strike in four years after annual wage talks collapsed over working conditions. Both unions, affiliates of the Korean Metal Workers Union (KMWU), called an eight-hour strike on July 13 and will decide on future action on Monday. General Motors workers have been stopping for several hours each day since July 11. The KMWU covers over 150,000 workers in the auto industry.

    The most important demand by Hyundai, Kia and GM workers is for an end to overnight work.

    —–

    South Korea’s MBC and YTN journalists remain on strike

    A strike by several hundred journalists and production staff at South Korea’s public broadcasters MBC and YTN over political bias by management is in its sixth month. Over 300 employees at MBC walked out on January 30 and were followed by journalists at KBS, YTN, and the publicly-funded news agency Yonhap, all calling for their respective pro-government CEOs to resign over alleged political bias.

    While MBC and YTN journalists remain on strike, the KBS union dropped its demand for the CEO Kim In-kyu to step down and has accepted a deal establishing an internal watchdog committee and reestablishment of a political investigative reporting team. Yanhap workers have also returned to work.

    http://wsws.org/articles/2012/jul2012/labo-j14.shtml

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  5. Pingback: Japanese speak out against whaling | Dear Kitty. Some blog

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