The whales of Iceland are safe from darts and nets for another year as the nation’s two major whaling companionships have decided to call off their summertime whaling season.
IP-Utgerd, an Icelandic whaling business that specializes in hunting minke whales, has announced it plans to abandon whaling absolutely, according to AFP news agency. Meanwhile, Hvalur hf, the largest whaling company in the country that specializes in fin whales, has paused its whaling activities for the second year in a row.
Since 2003, the year Iceland resumed commercial-grade whaling after a hiatus, at least 1,500 fin and minke whales have been killed by the island nation, according to the International Fund for Animal Welfare. Thanks to this recent decision, 2020 will join last year as the second year since 2002 that no whales will be slaughtered in Icelandic sprays. The move, nonetheless, appears to be guided by commerces and bank symmetries, rather than a change of heart or concerns of protection.
Kristjan Loftsson, the CEO of Hvalur hf, told Icelandic newspaper Morgunbladid that it would be too difficult to compete with Japan as both governments subsidizes whale products. Loftsson too quoth lockdown measures and the ongoing Covid-1 9 pandemic as a factor in the company’s decision.
Gunnar Bergmann Jonsson, the general manager of IP-Utgerd, quoth business as the above reasons behind their move, saying that an extension of a no-fishing coastal zone would make their operations too costly as their barges would have to go further offshore.
“I’m never going to hunt whales again, I’m stopping for good, ” he said speaking to AFP on April 24.
Iceland, along with other countries including Norway and Japan, have continuously been flouted the International Whaling Commission’s( IWC) 1986 global moratorium, which indefinitely “paused” commercial whaling of all species and populations.
While minke whales (< em> Balaenoptera acutorostrata ) are the most common of the great whale categories in the oceans and seas, hunting of the species is prohibited under the IWC moratorium and remains widely condemned by conservationists. The issue of hunting fin whales is even more controversial. The fin whale (< em> Balaenoptera physalus ) is the second-largest animal on Earth after the blue whale, reaching segments of up to 27 meters (~ 88 feet ). Their digits have increased since the 1970 s, but the uncommon genus is currently scheduled as vulnerable to extinct by the IUCN Red List .
Back in 2018, Hvalur hf was accused of killing 109 fin whales, of which 14 were pregnant, and two uncommon blue whale-fine whale composites. Sea Shepherd, a marine conservation partisan radical, filmed shocking footage of whalers from Hvalur hf drawn-out a composite whale into a whale terminal in Hvalfjorduand, before slaughter its person for meat and blubber.
In light of this recent news, Sea Shepherd mentioned that they hope it will to be translated into a permanent cessation of the practice in Iceland and beyond.
“I believe the writing is on the wall now for the world’s most notorious whaler Kristjan Loftsson and his company Hvalur hf. Now is the time for Loftsson to hang up his spears and for Iceland to become an ethical whale watching , not whale killing person, ” Rob Read, chief operating officer of Sea Shepherd UK and coordinator of Operation Mjolnir, was indicated in a statement.