Just yesterday we reported on environmentalists' and conservationists' pushing for the creation of a whale sanctuary in the southern part of the Atlantic Ocean. Unfortunately, it seems that their proposal has been defeated, seeing how 21 nations decided to vote against it.
This past Monday, during a meeting of the International Whaling Commission, Latin American countries, together with other nations, tried to argue that such a sanctuary is crucial in ensuring the survival of our dolphin, porpoise and whale population.
Thus, Argentina, Brazil, South Africa and Uruguay argued that said South Atlantic sanctuary could help fight back the negative impact that new drilling operations commissioned by Shell and other similar companies might have on the wellbeing of marine ecosystems.
On the other hand, Japan, Norway, Ireland, China, Russia and South Korea openly rejected the proposal.
Apparently, Japan has a long history of hunting whales living in the Antarctic waters for their meat and is not planning to give up on this activity anytime soon.
As far as they are concerned, hunting whales is part of their cultural heritage and therefore should not be impeded by others.
Jose Truza Palazzo, who spoke at this conference of behalf of Brazil, argued that “Japan doesn't want to give an inch on anything that may compromise their ability to roam the world doing whaling as they see fit.”
As Digital Journal
reports, he also added, “You can't really believe that Nauru or Tuvalu has an interest or has studied the sanctuary. They are voting because Japan tells them to.”
This means that, the way he sees things, not only did Japan vote against establishing the whale sanctuary, but it also influenced other nations in sharing its viewpoint.
For the time being, environmentalists and conservationists hope that, by raising more awareness and by getting the general public involved, our planet's marine mammals will eventually have the sanctuary they so badly need.