Whaling is the capture of cetaceans, for commercial or scientific purposes. The main purpose of industrial hunting is the extraction of whale blubber and whale meat for consumption.
The mismanagement of whaling in the past has brought several species of marine mammals to the brink of extinction.
In 1931, the first international convention limiting whaling was signed. In 1982, the International Whaling Commission introduced a ban on commercial whaling, effective from the 1985/1986 season. Following the cessation of commercial fishing, some species, such as the gray whale, are recovering in numbers, while others, such as the Biscay whale, remain highly endangered.
The exception is Japan
In 2019, after a 30-year hiatus, Japan issued an industrial fishing permit for 52 minke whales, 150 Brude’s striped whales and 25 seiwals – a total of 227 marine mammals.
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