The third day of IWC-66 started with deliberations on Japan’s discussion paper on small-type coastal whaling in its national jurisdiction. Japan identified a “fundamental difference” among parties, with some countries supporting a sustainable use of the resource, and others opposing whaling under any circumstances. A heated debated followed, and Japan suggested the item remain on the agenda of the IWC in the near future.
Participants heard reports from the Scientific Committee on: cetacean status and health, including on small cetaceans; cetacean habitat; and unintended anthropogenic impacts, including pollution, marine debris, bycatch, anthropogenic sound and ship strikes.
Participants also addressed whale killing methods and welfare issues, including improving the humaneness of whaling operations, entanglement of large whales, and strandings, hearing presentations about a number of successful initiatives worldwide to address these issues.
In a brief discussion about the IWC in the future, Japan proposed starting an intersessional discussion, possibly through the IWC’s website, to allow members to exchange views. Several countries questioned which items would be addressed in such a process, and how it would be moderated. Japan offered to draft Terms of Reference before the end of the week.
Throughout the day, informal consultations proceeded on draft resolutions discussed on Monday, including on enhancing the effectiveness of the IWC and improving the review process for whaling under special permit.
IISD Reporting Services, through its ENB Meeting Coverage, has provided daily web highlights from IWC66. In addition, IISD Reporting Services has published a summary report of the meeting in HTML and PDF.
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Caterina Fortuna, Italy, Chair, Scientific Committee
Katja Piškurs, Slovenia
Lorenzo Rojas Bracho, Mexico, Chair, Conservation Committee
Delegates from Japan (L-R) Kenji Kagawa, Kazunari Tanaka and Joji Morishita
Delegates from Gabon and artist Eric Alibert at an evening reception for the artist
(L-R) Sandra Altherr, Pro Wildlife; Nicolas Entrup, OceanCare; and Kate O’Connell, Animal Welfare Institute at Media Briefing on Commercial Whaling
Eric Alibert, Untitled, Ink on linen, Geneva 2016 - one of six life-size pieces at the venue