Iceland halts commercial whaling
From ANIMAL PEOPLE, September 2007:
REYKJAVIK–Iceland fisheries minister Einar K Guofinnsson on
September 3, 2007 announced that Iceland will not issue new
commercial whaling quotas.
Iceland in 2006 joined Norway in unilaterally defying the
21-year-old Inter-national Whaling Commission moratorium on
commercial whaling by issuing itself permits to kill 30 minke whales
and nine endangered fin whales. Anticipating a market in Japan for
whale meat, Icelandic fishers killed seven minke whales and seven
fin whales, but were unable to get permission to export the meat.
“There is no reason to continue commercial whaling if there
is no demand for the product,” Guofinnsson said.
Iceland, like Japan, has sustained a remnant whaling
industry despite the IWC moratorium by authorizing whalers to hunt in
the name of research. Iceland issued “scientific whaling” permits to
kill 38 minke whales in 2003, 25 in 2004, 39 in 2005, and 60 in
2006–far below the Japanese toll of 6,795 whales killed in research
whaling since 1987.