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Transcript of Sea Shepherd
The Japanese are mentioned frequently when it comes to whaling and the main issue currently with the Japanese which the Sea Shepherd is fighting against is their JAPAR II (Japanese Whale Research Program under Special Permit in the Antarctic). There have been allegations made about the Japanese only conducting research so that they can sell the whale meat commercially. More and more whales such as Minke and Humpback whale numbers are diminishing due to whaling and Sea Shepherd is attempting to stop this by physically intervening.
Although Sea Shepherd is famous for its work in prevention of whaling, they also have made campaigns for various other marine wildlife such as: dolphins, seals, sea lions and sharks. The Impact There is an obvious impact on the Hydrosphere. The ecosystems within the Hydrosphere can become imbalanced if just one animal is slaughtered and if several are slaughtered the numbers of wildlife the ecosystem can completely change. Not to mention that continuous killing of marine wildlife can deplete their numbers drastically. Whales produce very slowly therefore they cannot make up the numbers for the kill. Even though there have been protection programs for whales most populations never return to their original numbers. One example of this is blue whales, who are only 1% of their original population even though they have undergone 40 years of complete protection. In fact the only whales species to recover to its former population was the East Pacific Grey Whale. This issue has affected people because Sea Shepherd has attempted to combat the slaughter, it is also adding extra income to the wallets of the people who hunt whales. The Management Sea Shepherd has taken the situation into their own hands and have protested against Japanese whaling and physically has stopped the Japanese from whaling. However, many other organisations have recognised the over whaling situation such as: Greenpeace, Act Now and the IWC which have all implemented conservation initiatives.
Sea Shepherd's recent campaign " Operation Zero Tolerance" aimed to let zero whales die and although 75 whales were captured by the Japanese it was their smallest catch in history. Sea Shepherd saved the lives of approximately 800 whales which is a significant achievement. In terms of preventing the capture of whales Sea Shepherd has been fairly successful.
There have been regulations in the past e.g International Convention on the Regulation of Whaling, 1946. However many of these regulations and laws have failed to prevent illegal whaling. Not enough is being done to regulate whaling and to enforce the laws and regulations that have been put in place. The Issue Sea Shepherd enforces the international conservation regulations on the high seas made by the International Whaling Commission (IWC). The issue is that illegal killing of marine animals are happening in places such as the Southern Ocean and not enough action is being taken to stop it. If just one marine species is killed it will affect the rest of the ecosystem and create an imbalance which can lead to devastating consequences. Minke whales are not a threatened species however whales which are endangered and also being hunted are the Fin and Humpback whales. The true issue is the fact that even though restrictions on whaling have been put in place, they are being broken because not enough is being done to enforce them. This means that the whalers are continuing to kill where whales and their habitats are meant to be protected. Bibliography http://www.greenpeace.org/international/en/campaigns/oceans/whaling/
http://www.seashepherd.org However..... There are as people say two sides to every story. The Japanese have said in their defense that whaling is part of their culture and tradition and they should be able to continue this. The Japanese whaling industry however continues to slump and only survives on government subsidies who are paying out only for pride. Overall Opinion From the information presented above it seems that the work of Sea Shepherd is the more correct actions towards whales in comparison to the Japanese and its whaling. The evidence of damage to the population of whales is great and therefore displays what sought of damage can be expected if the Japanese continue to be allowed to kill whales illegally .