Update on Whaling

In August 2017, anti-whaling group Sea Shepherd announced it was ending its attempts to stop the Southern Ocean whale hunt by Japan, due to Japan's use of military-grade technology to track its ships. (ABC news).

In July 2017, Japan has passed a law enshrining the practice of whaling and is considering upgrading its fleet of vessels in a step toward returning to the controversial commercial practice. (ABC news)

Pocket guide


The International Whaling Commission introduced a moratorium on commercial whaling in 1986.

Japan commenced its program of scientific whaling a year after the moratorium began. Despite the moratorium, Norway has been whaling commercially since 1994, and Iceland began hunting commercially in September 2006. The US and several other nations are whaling under aboriginal whaling auspices.

Japan does not recognise Australia’s claim to the Antarctic continent. (The Conversation)


Many experts say the moratorium has notched up several successes in saving whale species driven to near-extinction by more than a century and a half of industrial hunting. Catches have dropped from 70,000 a year in the 1960s, to less than 2000.

In 2014 the International Court of Justice deemed that Japanese whaling was in fact a commercial operation, not strictly meeting the 'scientific research' criteria.

See more in Behind The News vid.


So you think whaling is cruel and should be banned for good. But what can you do?

Petition Japanese, Icelandic and Norwegian Governments

JAPAN     petition 1    petition 2         
NORWAY     petition 1    petition 2         
ICELAND    petition

Or write your own thoughts to Mr Sumio Kusaka the Japanese Ambassador to Australia.