For decades, animal welfare organizations have been pushing for an end to whaling. The cruel and outdated practice still occurs in three countries: Iceland, Norway, and Japan.
But there may be a glimmer of hope for the majestic whales in Iceland. Iceland’s fisheries minister, Svandis Svavarsdottir, said whaling is no longer profitable and is considering ending whaling in 2024.
Svavarsdottir told the Icelandic newspaper, Morgunbladid, “Why should Iceland take the risk of keeping up whaling, which has not brought any economic gain, in order to sell a product for which there is hardly any demand?”
Their largest market, Japan, resumed commercial whaling in 2019 which drastically decreased the demand for Iceland’s whale meat.
The number of whales slaughtered has also decreased due to the pandemic and increase in costs. While the annual whale quota through 2023 allows the killing of 217 minke whales and 209 fin whales, only one minke whale has been killed over the past three years in Iceland.
“Whales are worth much more alive than dead,” is the angle The Humane Society International (HSI) has been pushing to end whaling and they have proof.
“Iceland is already one of the best places in the world to go whale watching, and the country stands to attract even more ecotourists once it abandons whaling forever. More than 360,000 whale-watching tourists went to the waters of the North Atlantic near Iceland to admire whales in 2019, before the pandemic curtailed the industry’s operations,” wrote Kitty Block, CEO of HSI.
The news that Iceland signals an end to whaling is being celebrated by animal groups around the world who have been tirelessly fighting for the whales.
“Ending commercial whaling is the right thing to do, and IFAW salutes Iceland for this achievement,” stated International Fund for Animal Welfare (IFAW).
Watch the video IFAW created of Iceland’s journey over the past 20 years that led to this historic decision.
Iceland is on the verge of ending whaling which just leaves Japan and Norway. The brutal slaughter of these beautiful creatures must end. They don’t deserve to die a painful death by harpoon. Sign the petition below to help stop the whale massacre in the Faroe Islands!Whizzco