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Ecological reasons against whaling

earthangel

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THE OCEANS ARE DYING: With over 160 dead zones (i.e. where nothing lives - no oxygen, no plankton, no worms, no fish, nothing - some as large as 70,000 sq.kilometers), it is only a matter of time at the rate we are overfishing that the entire ocean will become full of nothing but sluggish invertebrates, uncontrolled algae blooms and bacteria for millions of years.

WHALES ARE CRITICAL TO OCEAN HEALTH: At the bottom of the food chain, plankton reserves have declined to 40-70% around the world. Whales (and large mammals such as dolphiins, sharks, seals) help regenerate plankton by injecting large amounts of fecal matter at the surface which fertilises plankton growth.Therefore all marine life depend on whales for their sustenance. The more whales that are killed, the faster the oceans die. As of 2003, 90% of ツ“big fishツ” like whales are gone.

OXYGEN-DEPRIVED WATERS: Whales do not draw on oxygen-saturated waters like other fish because they breathe atmospheric oxygen. At the same time they regenerate plankton which oxygenates these dead zones.

WHY OUR OCEANS ARE DYING: The main reason why our oceans are dying and fish are fewer in numbers and also smaller, sicker and hungrier, is not the fault of the whales. Whales have existed for millions of years in much greater numbers in harmony with fish. It is human greed -overfishing with long lines and trawler nets - along with pollution that has led to the current crisis. 75% of the oceans are overfished. Eliminating whales only exacerbates the problem. Instead we need to cut back or stop industrial and commercial fishing completely and stop wasting fish (e.g. livestock fodder) and leave enough for the other marine life to eat.

ETHICS: Whales are highly intelligent and evolved mammals with the ability to feel pain like us and have a right to live irrespective of any perceived value as economic goods.

SUSTAINABILITY: With so many whales extinct and endangered, it is folly to continue killing them. Extinction is forever.

WHALE WATCHING INDUSTRY: Globally, the whale watching industry grosses over US$1 billion a year. With the introduction of commercial whaling, all these independent businesses will collapse. You will be causing economic hardship to all these businesses who have worked hard to become successful.

DEAD OCEAN = DEAD PLANET: If all life ceases in the ocean, the ocean will be unable to absorb CO2 from the atmosphere and create oxygen for humans to live. The ocean will also offgass ten times more CO2 from stored calcium carbonate than burning fossil fuels adding to the demise of all life on the planet.

In view of the critical and urgent nature of the current ecological crisis in the oceans, intelligent, thinking people need to demand Japan, Norway and all nations of the world to permanently ban whaling.
 

mad pierrot

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Menkit, you seem like an intelligent person who is seriously concerned with the future of the oceans. I share your concern. The one thing I beg to differ is the status of Japan's whaling in all of this. Sustainable whaling isn't going to destroy the world. That being said, hunting endangered species is ridiculous and should be stopped.

Now, ecological concerns aside, I disagree with your moral objections.

ETHICS: Whales are highly intelligent and evolved mammals with the ability to feel pain like us and have a right to live irrespective of any perceived value as economic goods.

I've got quite abit to say about this statement. I'll be back later to say more. In the meantime, I suggest you think about what you imply by suggesting that one species can be more "highly" evolved than another. Based off your statement, I might conclude that you're a Christian who believes in the divine right of man over nature.
 

earthangel

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Hi Mad Pierrot. Hey, I see you have a new Avatar! I like it.

Ok back to sustainable whaling - if you check Prof. Stephen Palumbi's groundbreaking genetic research you will see that:

"The most recent firestorm began in July 2003, when the journal Science published a study on humpback, fin and minke whale populations co-authored by Palumbi and graduate student Joe Roman. Using DNA analysis, Palumbi and Roman concluded that the worldwide population of humpbacks, now estimated at 20,000, might have been as been as high as 1.5 million before commercial whaling took off in the 1800s. That figure is more than 10 times bigger than the widely accepted historical estimate of 100,000 humpbacks, which is based on 19th-century whaling records."

Since whales should be at 50% of former populations before "sustainable" whaling is resumed, and current whale populations are only at 1% (according to Palumbi), no country should be whaling.

Furthermore, whales have a slew of environmental factors working against their survival (noise pollution, chemical pollution, habitat loss, entanglement in fishing nets, ship strikes, global warming, seismic and military sonar. These factors need to be studied by the IWC in depth before determining whether or not whales should be allowed to be killed for commercial or scientific purposes.

I am glad you agree we should not be hunting endangered species. Yet Japan is doing precisely that. DNA samples show humpback whales (endangered according to CITES) in Japanese supermarkets. Also Japan wishes to start killing humpback whales in Australian territorial waters in the Southern Ocean Whale sanctuary. Bad move, Japan!

As far as moral objections to whaling are concerned, does that exclude cruelty? Whaling is very cruel and there simply is no humane way to kill a whale. First an exploding harpoon is lodged into the whale. Shock waves go to the brain but don't kill it. It is dragged onto the boat for processing. If it doesn't move, it is flensed (butchered). It could in fact still be conscious but paralyzed or in shock. If it moves hundreds of rounds of bullets are fired at it and then it could be electrocuted. I consider this to be morally wrong and inhumane.

You assume I am a Christian but you are wrong. I am a Buddhist. My point is that animals are sentient beings who have a right to live irrespective of their perceived value to man. It is a Christian mentality that believes whales are here for us to eat - Japan is more guilty of this attitude!

Beware of the finger pointing - three fingers point back at yourself.
 

RockLee

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Animals kill animals to survive...and humans shouldn't kill animals?Why? because they can eat plants too?So we're not supposed to eat animals, right? I fail to see the logic in all this.I do believe humans should use their brains and not extict animals, but I don't think we should stop eating animals.
 

mad pierrot

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You assume I am a Christian but you are wrong. I am a Buddhist. My point is that animals are sentient beings who have a right to live irrespective of their perceived value to man. It is a Christian mentality that believes whales are here for us to eat - Japan is more guilty of this attitude!

Funny. I wrote: Based off your statement, I might conclude that you're a Christian who believes in the divine right of man over nature. At the time I wrote this I already knew you were a Buddhist. It was a jive intended to get a rise out of you. It worked. The first thing I did after reading your post was to check out your website and read about you. Tibetan Buddhist, according to your website.

DNA samples show humpback whales (endangered according to CITES) in Japanese supermarkets.

What samples? Where and when was this study done? By whom? Was it attempted again by another non-biased organization with the same results? As I've said before, if the Japanese whaling industry is driving a species of whale to exctintion, I'm against it. So far, all of the data I have come across indicates that it is not. I am open to the possibility that I am wrong. Your mention of the report done by Prof. Stephen Palumbi's could be compelling evidence. And it might not be. I'll have to read it in its entirety and compare it to other sources. I might be crazy, but that's just how I like to make decisions; examine a wide number of sources, critically compare them, and come to a conclusion.

Also Japan wishes to start killing humpback whales in Australian territorial waters in the Southern Ocean Whale sanctuary. Bad move, Japan!

Next, as it has been pointed out by Japanese members of the board, please stop refering to "Japan" as the cause. "Japan" is the name of a country, not a singular entity that wants to eat whales off the face of the planet. I know many Japanese who are against whaling and this kind of stereotyping is disrespectful to them.

As far as moral objections to whaling are concerned, does that exclude cruelty? Whaling is very cruel and there simply is no humane way to kill a whale. First an exploding harpoon is lodged into the whale. Shock waves go to the brain but don't kill it. It is dragged onto the boat for processing. If it doesn't move, it is flensed (butchered). It could in fact still be conscious but paralyzed or in shock. If it moves hundreds of rounds of bullets are fired at it and then it could be electrocuted. I consider this to be morally wrong and inhumane.

The debate here is not about cruelty to animals. It's about Japan and the defense or persecution of its whaling industry. (Although the way you write posts makes it seem more like personal attacks on Japan.) Yes, I do agree with you that the manner in which whales are killed is hardly pleasant. If you would like to make a thread about the morality of slaughtering animals, I encourage you to do so. I am to blame for getting offtopic, I'll admit. Otherwise, let's keep to the original topic of your thread, which you titled "Ecological reasons against whaling." This way we can avoid confusion.

:sorry:
 

Horizon

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RockLee said:
Animals kill animals to survive...and humans shouldn't kill animals?Why? because they can eat plants too?So we're not supposed to eat animals, right? I fail to see the logic in all this.I do believe humans should use their brains and not extict animals, but I don't think we should stop eating animals.

You are correct and all, however there is a slight difference between a non-human animal killing another as opposed to a human doing the deed.

First of all, animals usually (don't get me started on dingos here) only kill to get food or to defend something like their babies, themselves, their territory, et cetera. Humans, on the other hand, have this slight tendency to kill other animals for various reasons, most not having to do with survival at all. Yes, we do kill them for food and for self-defense, but we mostly kill them for completely unnecessary reasons which stem from apparent feelings of superiority and ignorance. Some of these reasons are, of course, killing them for fun, for clothing, thinking our rights for whatever supresses their right to live, to defy nature some more, for vainity.

Can you sense a bit of a difference there?

Anyway, we should only be killing animals when absolutely necessary (for food and whatnot) and done so in a humane way, especially if we're going to continue prancing around, claiming to be the superior species on this planet. I think it's about either time to admit we aren't or about time for us to begin acting as such. We talk, but we don't walk type of thing.

Also, before you counter that entire thing about killing animals in a humane way with the fact that other animals do not, I'd just like to enforce it some more. First of all, animals don't have the necessary tools to kill animals as quickly and, hopefully, as painlessly as possible. I'm sure they would if they could, but, regardlessly, humans do have this. Secondly, before we created all this technology and whatnot, I'm pretty sure all we had were such things as stones and primative spears, so, in truth here, we more than likely killed animals just as slowly as the other animals, if not more.


As for the original topic, I think the exact same way that is described in Mad_Pierrot's first post. Except, possibly, the Christian thing of course.
 

Chris Davison

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Whaling in Japan

I am a UK guy new to the forum. I am deeply saddened that these very intelligent animals are still eaten as food., It was OK in the old world when brave men who after all had no idea of the sophistication of these animals, killed them for food etc. this is a new world and we know more about them, no they should not die in this way
 

MajideSaiaku

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Horizon said:
You are correct and all, however there is a slight difference between a non-human animal killing another as opposed to a human doing the deed.
First of all, animals usually (don't get me started on dingos here) only kill to get food or to defend something like their babies, themselves, their territory, et cetera. Humans, on the other hand, have this slight tendency to kill other animals for various reasons, most not having to do with survival at all. Yes, we do kill them for food and for self-defense, but we mostly kill them for completely unnecessary reasons which stem from apparent feelings of superiority and ignorance. Some of these reasons are, of course, killing them for fun, for clothing, thinking our rights for whatever supresses their right to live, to defy nature some more, for vainity.
Can you sense a bit of a difference there?
Anyway, we should only be killing animals when absolutely necessary (for food and whatnot) and done so in a humane way, especially if we're going to continue prancing around, claiming to be the superior species on this planet. I think it's about either time to admit we aren't or about time for us to begin acting as such. We talk, but we don't walk type of thing.
Also, before you counter that entire thing about killing animals in a humane way with the fact that other animals do not, I'd just like to enforce it some more. First of all, animals don't have the necessary tools to kill animals as quickly and, hopefully, as painlessly as possible. I'm sure they would if they could, but, regardlessly, humans do have this. Secondly, before we created all this technology and whatnot, I'm pretty sure all we had were such things as stones and primative spears, so, in truth here, we more than likely killed animals just as slowly as the other animals, if not more.
As for the original topic, I think the exact same way that is described in Mad_Pierrot's first post. Except, possibly, the Christian thing of course.
Wrong.
Dolphins attack each other sometimes, lions and mammals can kill just because it takes their fancy.
Your trying to make a distinction between humans and the rest of the world but quite frankly its a false impression and wrong wrong wrong.
Human beings are natural beings like everything else on earth, and our instincts and behaviours arent alien to other wildlife, countless documentaries and studies of wildlife have shown many species behaving with what you would considor purely human behaviours and instincts, and humans quite obviously have several natural brehaviours, fighting over territory, courting a member of the opposite sex, being highly defensive over our children, the fact of the matter is, humans are primates, we are apes, we keep forgetting that we are still animals.
I also find this idea of nature being awsomely lovely and innocent and cuddly wrong aswell.
Nature is not malicious but neither is it fair and caring, you show weakness and the natural world jumps, a hungry lion who attacks someone isnt going to stop and think "gee, this poor bloke was just trying to go home to his family" its thinking "mhmm food".
Your trying to apply humanity to a whale, yes, protect it because its endangered, protect it because it holds a vital role in its ecosystem, and yes, try and hunt them as humanely as possible, but if people want to eat whales and it isnt going to kill them off, fine, allow it.
Also your opinion that humans hunt for mostly sport or "unreasonable uses" is false, domesticated animals need feed, and humans mostly hunt for food, do you think butchers and fish-mongers stock their meats just for the decorative value of fish and cow meat in their shop?.....no, people come in and buy the food, take it home, prepare and eat it, contrary to your opinion,most humans hunt for food....just like wildlife, we do it because we need to eat, not because we get our jollies off of destroying the world.
I think its actually to humanities credit that we are trying to be "eco-friendly" of late, responsible forestry management, species conservation, you have to remember that humans are living natural things to, and we have demands on the enviroment just like every other species, you should try and give more credit to the fact most of the world is trying to be as eco-friendly as possible while maintaining our own existance, rather then try and make us seem as if were somehow alien invaders to earth and dont belong, that isnt an option, that requires humanity to become extinct, are you willing to kill yourself and all humanity over a whale?....we evolved here, so accept it or not, nature has long been familiar with humanity, and chances are, despite the constant doomsaying, earth, life, and humanity will continue to exist.
Thats my 2 cents on it anyway, i dont feel it is wrong to have empathy with other life, but it should have better focus then the ineffective attitude of many enviromentally minded "activists", be active by working in the system to change things, instead of sitting outside it and just getting angry and blowing hot air and acheiving nothing.
I dont disagree with protecting the enviroment, but it needs to be effectual action to this end, and it needs to be tempered with logic and reason and what you can realistically expect to change and effect.
Finally i also agree with the free careless use of Japan, The vast majority of japanese neither eat whale meat, or care for whaling, the same cans of whale-meat i saw a week or two ago are still in the ozam supermarket i went to, so whale meat is by no means in high demand by all japanese, the attitude is no better then accusing all americans or australians of being rapists just because some men(and women) in your countries rape people.
Its a common problem i find, that people like to lump all the japanese together, but please remember the japanese people are as varied and different as your own country, japanese are all individuals aswell....if you disagree ask my girlfriend, im sure she will be happy to show you her individuality. 😌
peace
-nuri

EDIT:
I just remembered it but its a fair observation, back in the 80's and 70's and so on, people would be making claims, like oil would run out within 20-30 years, the enviroment would be so severly damaged as to be nearly unlivable, global warming would heat up the earth to near or just beyond tolerance by now, the ozone hole would get larger and larger until the ozone layer dissappeared (which infact, it has apparently gotten smaller, though to be fair this is probably thanks to hard and fast hitting measures to curb the pollution that created it) yet here we are, 2006, im sitting at a table with a view overlooking the interior-wards of japan, the sun is shining the sky is blue with white fluffy clouds, theres a slight breeze, the trees are still on the mountains plants are still growing and birds are still singing.

I dont have a problem with taking action to protect the enviroment, i just get fed up of siren voiced doomsaying alarmists, if it isnt the earth dying on us within a year, its an asteroid heading for us to whipe us out...lately the world seems to have an obsession with impending oblivion, yet it fails to occur, its the same throughout history, if it wasnt invaders at the gates it was an angry god on the verge of smitting a sinful people.

I've personally decided to tackle the issues of the planet without believing everything that is alarmed about, until i can see the evidence for myself, and as for asteroids, well, i aint going to worry unless i see a fireball in the sky growing bigger and bigger, and by then, its probably too late to do anything, so apart for feeling sorry for myself and my nearest and dearest, ill just make my peace and wait.

I just find panic such a waste of precious energy.
 

MajideSaiaku

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MORE ONTOPIC

I think that contrary to the opinion plankton will die down, the populaion will explode, many species of whale "eat" plankton, so without their natural predators, their population will explode.

I thought plankton lived off of mineral rich waters, not aquatic animal unchi :S

I'll have to read up on plankton, its been a while since i last studied them.
 

sabro

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It seems a rather sad testament to our stewardship of the planet when the management of the oceans becomes a task we have to take on. If you look back at the original posts, the stakes are actually higher than losing the polar caps or rain forrests.
 

MajideSaiaku

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Nah, im still more convinced losing all the rainforests or polar-icecaps would do more harm then losing a species of whale.

A whale species is just one species in a wet desert we call the ocean, rainforests harbour so many different species of all sorts of life, that they have probably more species per cubic mile then anywhere else on earth.

Somehow i think losing such massive bio-deversity and the oxygen factory that is the rainforests is quite completely and unquestionably more vital then a whale species or two.
 

Reiku

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earthangel said:
THE OCEANS ARE DYING: With over 160 dead zones (i.e. where nothing lives - no oxygen, no plankton, no worms, no fish, nothing - some as large as 70,000 sq.kilometers), it is only a matter of time at the rate we are overfishing that the entire ocean will become full of nothing but sluggish invertebrates, uncontrolled algae blooms and bacteria for millions of years.
WHALES ARE CRITICAL TO OCEAN HEALTH: At the bottom of the food chain, plankton reserves have declined to 40-70% around the world. Whales (and large mammals such as dolphiins, sharks, seals) help regenerate plankton by injecting large amounts of fecal matter at the surface which fertilises plankton growth.Therefore all marine life depend on whales for their sustenance. The more whales that are killed, the faster the oceans die. As of 2003, 90% of ツ“big fishツ” like whales are gone.
OXYGEN-DEPRIVED WATERS: Whales do not draw on oxygen-saturated waters like other fish because they breathe atmospheric oxygen. At the same time they regenerate plankton which oxygenates these dead zones.
WHY OUR OCEANS ARE DYING: The main reason why our oceans are dying and fish are fewer in numbers and also smaller, sicker and hungrier, is not the fault of the whales. Whales have existed for millions of years in much greater numbers in harmony with fish. It is human greed -overfishing with long lines and trawler nets - along with pollution that has led to the current crisis. 75% of the oceans are overfished. Eliminating whales only exacerbates the problem. Instead we need to cut back or stop industrial and commercial fishing completely and stop wasting fish (e.g. livestock fodder) and leave enough for the other marine life to eat.
ETHICS: Whales are highly intelligent and evolved mammals with the ability to feel pain like us and have a right to live irrespective of any perceived value as economic goods.
SUSTAINABILITY: With so many whales extinct and endangered, it is folly to continue killing them. Extinction is forever.
WHALE WATCHING INDUSTRY: Globally, the whale watching industry grosses over US$1 billion a year. With the introduction of commercial whaling, all these independent businesses will collapse. You will be causing economic hardship to all these businesses who have worked hard to become successful.
DEAD OCEAN = DEAD PLANET: If all life ceases in the ocean, the ocean will be unable to absorb CO2 from the atmosphere and create oxygen for humans to live. The ocean will also offgass ten times more CO2 from stored calcium carbonate than burning fossil fuels adding to the demise of all life on the planet.
In view of the critical and urgent nature of the current ecological crisis in the oceans, intelligent, thinking people need to demand Japan, Norway and all nations of the world to permanently ban whaling.

Two words, Earthangel:

Prove it.
 

Aerain

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Right now we should worry more about the destruction of our natural ecosystem more than anything, I find it really disturbing that some people have more interest in defending some issue, without even trying to reduce garbage, use less energy, pick up garbage in forest, etc... And don't tell me you do, because I won,t believe you.
 

tommtomm

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whaling

Hi all,
what makes me laugh the most when I read all the reports is this.
Japan, Iceland and Norway are the 3 countries that still resist the ban on hunting whales.
But Iceland does not eat the meat instead it sends it to Japan, the same as Norway.
Even though international laws forbid the trade of endangered animal meat.
Japan gets through the hunting of whales by saying it’s for scientific reason....did you hear that, scientific reasons. If it’s as simple as that, then why the hell is the meat then ending up in the market place.
I've read a lot of comments saying stop blaming Japan, the people are not all the same, "There are a lot of Japanese that are against whaling" blah blah blah. Japan is the country that lays down the law, should that country truly want to ban the trade of whale meat, it would prosecute and jail the traders, end of story. This is not happening.
Almost all whale species are now endangered, they have survived for millions of years, being a part of a complex and diverse ecosystem that is our Oceans, because of human activity in the last 150 year quite a few are now extinct and most of them are endangered.
Japan, Iceland, Norway for God/Buddha/Allah/Darwin sake Stop being a bunch of Idiots and stop what you are doing.
If the Population of whales return to what they use to be 150 years ago then fine start to hunt them again in a controlled manner. But at least give them the chance to recover.
 

tommtomm

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Right now we should worry more about the destruction of our natural ecosystem more than anything, I find it really disturbing that some people have more interest in defending some issue, without even trying to reduce garbage, use less energy, pick up garbage in forest, etc... And don't tell me you do, because I won,t believe you.

Lol I am very aware of the garbage that I throw out, as well as picking up rubbish when I am hiking, but I get annoyed when people say reduce your energy.

No NO No, We live in societies that are able to power ourselves in a sustainable way. Make sure the energy supplier you are with only uses green sources, if everyone did this, then the companies would be far more competitive and the costs for those services would be far cheaper than what it is now.

I am more than happy to pay double for my electricity, as long as I know non of it came from oil, gas nor coal. And don't give me that rubbish that you can't afford it. walk to work or cycle, the money that you would have spent on a car goes into that wonderful green energy.

Very sorry for diverting off topic but that annoyed me.
 

Astroboy

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THE OCEANS ARE DYING: With over 160 dead zones (i.e. where nothing lives - no oxygen, no plankton, no worms, no fish, nothing - some as large as 70,000 sq.kilometers), it is only a matter of time at the rate we are overfishing that the entire ocean will become full of nothing but sluggish invertebrates, uncontrolled algae blooms and bacteria for millions of years.
WHALES ARE CRITICAL TO OCEAN HEALTH: At the bottom of the food chain, plankton reserves have declined to 40-70% around the world. Whales (and large mammals such as dolphiins, sharks, seals) help regenerate plankton by injecting large amounts of fecal matter at the surface which fertilises plankton growth.Therefore all marine life depend on whales for their sustenance. The more whales that are killed, the faster the oceans die. As of 2003, 90% of ツ“big fishツ” like whales are gone.
OXYGEN-DEPRIVED WATERS: Whales do not draw on oxygen-saturated waters like other fish because they breathe atmospheric oxygen. At the same time they regenerate plankton which oxygenates these dead zones.
WHY OUR OCEANS ARE DYING: The main reason why our oceans are dying and fish are fewer in numbers and also smaller, sicker and hungrier, is not the fault of the whales. Whales have existed for millions of years in much greater numbers in harmony with fish. It is human greed -overfishing with long lines and trawler nets - along with pollution that has led to the current crisis. 75% of the oceans are overfished. Eliminating whales only exacerbates the problem. Instead we need to cut back or stop industrial and commercial fishing completely and stop wasting fish (e.g. livestock fodder) and leave enough for the other marine life to eat.
ETHICS: Whales are highly intelligent and evolved mammals with the ability to feel pain like us and have a right to live irrespective of any perceived value as economic goods.
SUSTAINABILITY: With so many whales extinct and endangered, it is folly to continue killing them. Extinction is forever.
WHALE WATCHING INDUSTRY: Globally, the whale watching industry grosses over US$1 billion a year. With the introduction of commercial whaling, all these independent businesses will collapse. You will be causing economic hardship to all these businesses who have worked hard to become successful.
DEAD OCEAN = DEAD PLANET: If all life ceases in the ocean, the ocean will be unable to absorb CO2 from the atmosphere and create oxygen for humans to live. The ocean will also offgass ten times more CO2 from stored calcium carbonate than burning fossil fuels adding to the demise of all life on the planet.
In view of the critical and urgent nature of the current ecological crisis in the oceans, intelligent, thinking people need to demand Japan, Norway and all nations of the world to permanently ban whaling.


Still I don't understand WHY Japan and others are not allowed to do whaling. Meanwhile I don't feel anything ecological about Aussie Beef and Kangarro meat, though it's low-end grass fed meat.
 
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