Congressman Brian Baird (WA-03) has introduced a House resolution calling on the United States to lead the way in improving and strengthening whale conservation. Congressman Baird's resolution also calls for the continuation of measures barring commercial, scientific, and other lethal whaling.
"Whales were killed for hundreds of years because of commercial whaling, almost to the point of extinction," said Congressman Baird. "Whales are not only an important part of the marine ecosystem, but they also contribute to tourism and scientific research worldwide. The 1986 International Whaling Commission (IWC) moratorium on commercial whaling was a step forward in preserving whale populations, but there's more that has to be done. We have to maintain our commitment to end scientific and commercial whaling."
Congressman Baird, who chairs the Energy and Environment Subcommittee, has been a long-time advocate for protecting the health of the oceans and marine ecosystems. H. Res. 1390 calls on the United States to use its position as a global leader to help ensure that commercial, scientific, and other lethal whaling does not happen except in the cases of native subsistence. Congressman Baird's resolution acknowledges that whales face an uncertain future due to various environmental threats and remain vulnerable to the long-term effects of abuse and hunting. H. Res. 1390 also highlights that the allowance for scientific whaling in the 1986 moratorium has created a loophole, which has led to the hunting and killing of more than 35,000 whales since the moratorium started.
H. Res. 1390 has been referred to the House Committee on Foreign Affairs.