Subject: IWC: Conservationists urge action t (fwd)

Mike Williamson (
Fri, 15 May 1998 19:02:39 -0400 (EDT)


---------- Forwarded message ----------
Date: Fri, 15 May 98 11:55:00 GMT 
Subject: Conservationists urge action t

Conservationists urge action to save whale habitat

    LONDON, May 14 (Reuters) - A leading animal rights group on
Thursday urged the International Whaling Commission to undertake
a full-scale overhaul of whale and dolphin conservation.
     The Environmental Investigation Agency said this should
extend protection to all species and tackle the ecological
problems facing the oceans where they live.
     It said the IWC had concentrated on banning whale hunting
and had failed to tackle pollution, industrial fisheries,
climate change and ozone depletion.
     These factors were thought to have caused a dramatic
reduction in whale populations in recent years, the EIA said in
a statement issued ahead of the IWC's annual meeting, to be be
held in Oman from May 16-20.
     "IWC protection has saved tens of thousands of whales, but
68 species are unprotected and some face imminent extinction,"
said EIA campaign director Steve Trent.
     "In its 50th anniversary year and in United Nations Year of
the Oceans, the IWC must look to the future and extend
protection to all whales, dolphins and porpoises."
     He added: "Saving whales in the 21st century will be about
habitat as well as hunting. We need a new vision for the IWC."
     The EIA, which has offices in London and Washington, said
large numbers of small cetaceans were being killed in an
unregulated manner.
     Each year, more than 1,000 pilot whales and hundreds of
dolphins and porpoises are killed in the Danish-owned Faroe
     At least 15,000 Dall's porpoises and hundreds of endangered
striped dolphins are killed off Japan. More than 600 beluga
whales, whose numbers have fallen by 60 percent in the past 12
years, are killed by Greenland hunters, the EIA said.