Parliament

Gordon Campbell | Parliament TV | Parliament Today | Video | Questions Of the Day | Search

 

Whale Sanctuary Falls Short Despite Strong Vote

South Pacific Whale Sanctuary Falls Short Despite Strong Vote

Conservation Minister Sandra Lee says there is now an increased prospect that the South Pacific breeding grounds of the great whales may be exposed to commercial whaling, following the International Whaling Commission’s failure to establish a South Pacific whale sanctuary, despite a further strong vote in its favour.

"That means one less barrier between commercial whalers and the remaining great whales of our region," she said.

Ms Lee, who is in London attending the IWC’s Annual Meeeting, said pro-whaling states, led by Japan and aided by six Caribbean nations, blocked the three- quarters majority required by the IWC to establish the sanctuary.

She said the vote at the IWC's decision-making Plenary Session meeting in London was 20 countries in favour, 13 against and 4 abstentions. Earlier disclosures of vote-buying tactics by Japan have cast a shadow over proceedings.

"The government is extremely disappointed," Ms Lee said. "This outcome is a setback for the international community's stewardship of our global oceans."

"It is also a setback for marine ecosystem management in the Southern Hemisphere, given that pro-whaling countries are exerting increasing pressure to have the international moratorium on whaling overturned," she said.

"This outcome will not stop progress towards greater protection for whales in our region. There are alternative options, and we will now be actively investigating these in partnership with other Pacific Island countries.

“New Zealand’s protection of whales within its EEZ is already being emulated by French Polynesia and could serve as a model elsewhere in the Pacific.

“A network of local sanctuaries would cover up to 75% of the proposed sanctuary area and help protect the devastated populations of great whales. It would make a valuable contribution to sustainable eco-tourism initiatives.”


Ms Lee said the strength of Pacific Island support for the whale sanctuary was eloquently conveyed to the meeting by Job Opu, Marine Programme Officer for SPREP (the South Pacific Regional Environment Programme).

New Zealand and Australia first proposed a South Pacific whale sanctuary at last year's IWC meeting in Adelaide but the voting support fell short of the required three-quarters majority.

Sandra Lee expressed her gratitude for the support this year of the countries that had co-sponsored the proposal and those that had voted in favour, and for the environmental groups that had worked so hard to achieve lasting protection for the South Pacific’s living whale heritage.

“It is extremely frustrating that some members of the IWC have so little regard for the sincere aspirations of non-member countries in the South Pacific who seek a more permanent protection for the severely-depleted populations of great whales in their region.” Ms Lee said.

Ends

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Regional Headlines

Crowdsale And Crowdfunding Campaign: Help Create The Future Of Independent News

Two weeks to go! The Scoop 3.0 plan aims to create NZ’s first community-owned, distributed news and media intelligence ecosystem in 2019. We believe this ScoopPro media monetisation approach can be scaled and spread globally to support local and independent news efforts in regional New Zealand and around the world.

Scoop is an ecosystem, it would not exist without those who contribute to it, read it and rely on it for professional media purposes. Generous past support from this ecosystem has enabled us to come this far in developing our business model. Support our PledgeMe Campaign>>

 

14/11: Two Years’ Progress Since The Kaikoura Earthquake

Mayor John Leggett said it was a day for reflection, but also a time to recognise the work by many people to support progress towards recovery made across Marlborough since November 2016. More>>

ALSO:

Pike River: Mine Drift Re-Entry Plan To Proceed

“I’ve decided the Te Kāhui Whakamana Rua Tekau Mā Iwa - Pike River Recovery Agency, recommended course of action to enter the drift, using the existing access tunnel, is by far the safest option,” said Andrew Little. More>>

ALSO:

Appointments: New High Commissioner To Australia Announced

“Dame Annette King needs no introduction given her long running career as a parliamentarian where she has previously held a number senior Cabinet portfolios, including Justice, Police and Health. She also was Parliament’s longest serving female MP with 30 years’ service,” said Mr Peters. More>>

ALSO:

Two Years Since Kaikoura: Silvia Cartwright To Lead Inquiry Into EQC

“The inquiry will be the first of its kind under the Public Inquiries Act 2013 and will have all the powers of a Royal Commission, be independent of Government and make its report directly to the Governor-General. More>>

ALSO:

Gordon Campbell: On The Royal Commission Into Child Abuse

Obviously, it is good news that the coalition government has broadened the scope of its Royal Commission into the abuse of children, beyond its previous focus on children in state care. More>>

ALSO:

Cases Delayed: Court Staff Refuse To Handle Sentencing Papers

Dozens of court cases have reportedly been delayed, as court staff escalate industrial action at two Auckland courts by enforcing a ban on handling sentencing papers. More>>

ALSO:

Education: Primary Teachers Rolling Strikes

RNZ Report: More than 100,000 primary school students in Auckland will be home from school today as teachers and principals walk off the job for the second time this year. It's the start of a week of rolling one-day strikes around the country, after the collapse of contract negotiations last Thursday. More>>

ALSO:

"Process Was Sound": Inquiry Into Haumaha Appointment Released

The Inquiry’s purpose was to examine, identify, and report on the adequacy of the process that led to the appointment. It found the process was sound and no available relevant information was omitted. More>>

ALSO:

 
 
 
 
 

LATEST HEADLINES

  • PARLIAMENT
  • POLITICS
  • REGIONAL
 
 

InfoPages News Channels