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The Whaling Regime. Whaling. Whale Products: oil whalebone and baleen meat Whaling History Vikings and Basques 18th century: US and Britain largest whaling fleets Early 20 th century: tragedy of the commons. The International Whaling Commission (IWC).

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  • Whale Products:
    • oil
    • whalebone and baleen
    • meat
  • Whaling History
    • Vikings and Basques
    • 18th century: US and Britain largest whaling fleets
    • Early 20th century: tragedy of the commons
the international whaling commission iwc
The International Whaling Commission (IWC)
  • International Convention for the Regulation of Whaling (1946)
    • -“to provide for the proper conservation of whale stocks and thus make possible the orderly development of the whaling industry…”
  • Established the IWC

-whaling and non-whaling states can be members;

-15 member states until about the 1970s

-Schedule: regulates global catch quotas; length of whaling season; partial moratoriums.

- 3/4 majority to amend the Schedule

-members can lodge and objection to amendments in the Schedule and thereby not be bound by these amendments

from management to conservation
From Management to Conservation
  • Depleted whale stocks
  • US, New Zeeland stopped whaling
  • NGO campaign against whaling
  • 1972: Call for moratorium on commercial whaling
us unilateralism
US Unilateralism
  • The Pelly Amendment to the Fishermen’s Protective Act (1971)

- Import restrictions on international fishing operations which diminish the effectiveness of an international fishery conservation program

    • Secretary of Commerce certifies that a state is diminishing the effectiveness of the IWC
  • 1972 Marine Mammal Protection Act
  • Peru, Chile, South Korea, and Taiwan: Non IWC members certified under the Pelly amendment
us multilateralism
US Multilateralism
  • Increase IWC participation of whaling states close to the US: Peru, Chile, South Korea, Taiwan..
  • Increase IWC participation of non-whaling states: Seychelles, Antigua and Barbuda; Oman, Kenya, Egypt…
  • Convert pro-whaling states: Argentina, Uruguay, Australia…
commercial whaling moratorium
Commercial Whaling Moratorium
  • Adopted in 1982;in effect since 1986-87;
  • Japan, Peru, Norway, Russia objected
  • All but Norway withdrew objection
  • Iceland left IWC in 1993
  • Aboriginal whaling allowed: US (45), Russia (170), Greenland (127), St. Vincent & Grenadines(3)
  • Objected the Moratorium
  • 1987-temporary halt on commercial whaling;
  • Research to assess NE Atlantic minke whale stock (approx. 86,700 animals). IWC Scientific Committee confirmed Minke whales can be harvested sustainably;
  • Certified under Pelly Amendment (4 times)
  • Resumed whaling 1993
    • 549 northern minkes 2001;
    • 674 northern minkes 2002;
  • Withdrew in 1992, but did not whale since
  • Back in the IWC in 2001
  • Entered objection to the moratorium
  • State intent to resume whaling in 2006
  • Hunts whales for scientific purposes
    • 400 minke annually in the Antarctic; some endangered whales (e.g. 50 sei whales)
  • Sells meat on the market
future of the moratorium
Future of the Moratorium?
  • Irish proposal (1998) – allow whaling only in exclusive economic zones (not in deep ocean); only for domestic consumption
  • 2003 IWC resolution: 25:20 for conservation and against lifting the ban