Published by the Natural Resources Defense Council (NRDC) Support Us

Sign Up for Our Newsletter

Facebook

Opinions and observations from environmental experts, activists, and luminaries
I agree, we need to step up our opposition and make it clear to the President we won't stand for indecision. It's time to Make a stand for the Whales! It's our duty as stewards of the Earth ans caretakers of the many species of wildlife that inhabit our world. I've passed this on to everyone I know, written to the President and encourage everyone to do the same. This is much too important to put it off until later. Kudo's Pierce, keep fighting and we'll keep fighting right beside you.
First of all, great journalism, which sources are you citing about the "near extinction" of whales? Do you have any idea what you are talking about? I wonder if you are just an innocent person who swallows all the propaganda thrown at you through TV and other media, or if you're one of the persons who's making this stuff up. Unfortunately, whale hunting is a huge taboo with many nations, I suppose one of the reasons is that when you kill a whale there is a lot of blood in the sea. There's also a lot of blood when cows are killed, the difference is that it happens in a slaughterhouse, behind closed doors where you cannot see it. Okay, now let's get this straight: I know many people working in the fishing industry in Iceland (yes, I'm Icelandic). Let me tell you, they know what they're talking about. And the fact of the matter is, that the sea is completely swarming with whales. Yes, you heard me. In fact they are so overpopulated that we've had to cut down on fishing many of our traditional fishes, one of the reasons being how much whales eat. Do you realise how much fish these beasts eat? It has been estimated that all the whales in the world eat yearly around 300-500 million tons of fish. That's 3-5 times more than all the nations of the world are fishing combined! Take the same example just surrounding Iceland, and you find that whales eat around 6 million tons of fish and we fish around 1,5 million tons. Even though much of the fish whales eat isn't used by humans, it's still an amazing number. Think about how much meat you get from one fin whale, you could have a barbeque for ca. 700 people, just from one whale! The world is constantly striving to find sources for food. Just imagine all the poverty you could solve through whales! (Unless you consider the life of a whale more important than human life?) It has been estimated that in the sea surrounding Iceland are right now swimming around 3-400.000 whales. Do you honestly believe that those few hundreds we've hunted in recent years have anything to say? The whale hunting that Icelanders have been doing in the recent years are not done without careful examination. We happen to have an institution which examines the sea around Iceland and all the species that live there. Website: www.hafro.is. The whaling that we are doing now was approved by them, despite the fact that most fishermen in Iceland consider them in general to be way too conservative in their estimates. Usually I ignore it when people speak like that, but someone had to say this. Stop believing everything the media tells you and actually look these things up. Now before you try to say that I don't cite any sources either, I do have sources, but they're only in Icelandic. I suppose you could try google translate if you want. The website www.visindavefur.hi.is is held out by the University of Iceland, where you can ask any question and get a scientific answer to it. http://visindavefur.hi.is/svar.asp?id=1471 http://visindavefur.hi.is/svar.asp?id=635 http://visindavefur.hi.is/svar.php?id=3685 With hope that you will all be enlightened about the REAL situation when it comes to whales! Gunnar
Ban Iceland, blablablabla. Did anyone read the article and sat down and think a bit? Iceland is hunting whales (beside of many other countries, such as Canada, USA, Faroe Island, etc) yes, - I personally not agree with whale hunting, - except some northern tribe whom hunting them for as necessary food supply, but it is another article - but these countries are do it, because there is a market for it (and don't even come up with that rubbish excuse that is for research reason). What about the countries mentioned above in the article (Japan, Norway, Latvia and Belarus) which has the demand for the "product"? I believe, they're posing as much threat for this intelligent animal as Iceland or any other whale hunting country does, or even more. End of the day, if there's no market for whale there's no point to hunt them down. Just a thought... Ps: Gunnar: what you've just said is utterly infantile.
Why is it infantile?
Given the economic and environmental (volcanic activity specifically troubles that Iceland has been facing in recent years it seems cold hearted to offer an ultimatum in which Iceland has no advantageous choice, especially when considering that they observe and restrict their own whaling.
Just because a bunch of rich and powerful nations decided to impose a ban on whaling that is no reason why the indigenous people of the Arctic should have to give up their traditional way of life. They aren't the ones who sent factory ships all over the world and slaughtered millions of whales just for oil and then left the bodies to rot. The Icelanders like the other Arctic nations have been hunting whales in their own waters for over a thousand years. Leave them alone! Now, of all times, to try to impose sanctions is absolutely inhumane. Iceland lost its entire national treasury in the economic meltdown created by the derivative traders. What Iceland needs is foreign investment to get its economy going again. Maybe rich fatheads should be trying to help the Icelanders, who have been suffering from volcanic eruptions covering their farmlands, to find new sources of income instead of trying to destroy their way of life. If they had a better way to make a living they wouldn't need to hunt whales to survive.
Let's just kill everything on earth and have it done with. Slaughtering whales, destroying our oceans, planet... Well done humankind. And there are many who say that man was created in Gods' image? What an embarrassment we must be to his friends.
Well, nice try. If Americans continue to slaughter whales in the Arctic, then American-connected companies, NGOs, and the US government have no moral authority here. Stop killing the truly endangered Bowhead Whales, then come to Iceland and give lectures about Minkes. NRDC is usually so balanced, but in this case, you cannot pretend that there are meaningful differences between Inuits and Icelanders when it comes to the imperative to not kill large cetaceans. Two wrongs may not be better than one, but you cannot in good faith cast stones from a glass house, either. That makes NRDC look either ignorant or duplicitous.
If this is an international ban, then the international organization (the United Nations) should pose the sanctions. ALL created life is EQUALLY sacred. Mankind needs to get out of its EGO and start paying attention to UNIVERSAL LAW. The world is quickly changing in his regard.
Agreed. But the question goes even further and can be asked of all countries, all humans about cows, pigs, chicken, ducks, dolphin, fish and the rest...
Y por que no sancionar también a Dinamarca, Suecia, Noruega y Finlandia que también cazan ballenas y sobretodo a Japón que compra los productos derivados de la masacre, en vez de cebarnos con Islandia un paisito que tuvo el valor de decir que no pagará las deudas usurarias a la banca inglesa, o será que el Sr. Brossmann no nos cuenta toda la verdad