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Common bottlenose dolphin wild and free © Tim Stenton

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Japan argues that it's a 'scientific debate, not a legal one'

Japan is currently testifying at the ICJ, The Hague and arguing that the court should not rule in favour with Australia as this is simply a ‘scientific debate amongst scientists’. The core of their argument is that Japan is not required to gain approval from the International Whaling Commission (IWC), simply to submit their whaling…

Australia’s motivation: Japan attacks

Whilst Australia’s motivation for bringing the case on Japanese Scientific Whaling to the International Court of Justice (ICJ) may be the result of domestic public pressure, the Government of Japan seems to have a more sceptical perspective.  Presenting their oral arguments to the court Japan argued that: ‘Another aspect of the case pertains to confining the…

The IWC and 'scientific whaling'

At the International Court of Justice, Japan is trying hard to argue that its current whaling is not commercial. It also argues that there is no problem with its whaling and tries to imply that the IWC has no problem with its whaling activities. However, looking back at previous statements of the IWC we can…

Whaling and Whale Watching in Iceland

Since mid-June, Iceland has slaughtered at least 17 endangered fin whales, the same whales that support a thriving whale watching industry.  The hunt is the first for two years and, despite the international ban on commercial whaling, Iceland has set itself a quota of 184 fin whales, potentially to be killed over the next few…

New studies reveal impact of navy sonar on whales

Two new published studies in the scientific journals Proceedings B and Biology Letters, reveal how simulated navy sonar can disturb the behaviour of blue whales and beaked whales. Despite often being considered an ‘emerging threat’ to whales and dolphins, noise pollution has been on the agenda since the 1980s – more than 30 years now.…

The tradition of whaling in the Faroe Islands

Journalist Hans Peter Roth continues his reports from the Faroe Islands. What a sight, when the Faroese bring their rowing boats to water. Beautiful wooden constructions – true artwork in handicrafts and quite similar to what the traditional Viking boats used to look like. The Vikings were phenomenal sailors and navigators who had discovered North…