University of Tasmania

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From St Kitts to Agadir : reform of the International Whaling Commission from 2006 - 2010

posted on 2023-05-26, 00:03 authored by Iliff, MS
The 2006 annual meeting of the International Whaling Commission in St Kitts was notable for two interconnected reasons: first, the failure of discussion on the Revised Management Scheme, the introduction of which, it had been hoped by the pro-whaling faction, would lead to a lifting of the moratorium and a resumption of some form of commercial whaling; and secondly, the passing of the St Kitts and Nevis Declaration. In reaffirming the true purpose of the International Convention for the Regulation of Whaling as being a convention for the sustainable hunting of whales, passing of the Declaration was a major win for the pro-whaling side. Following that meeting, the incoming chairman of the Commission, Bill Hogarth, launched a program to seek a way forward for the Commission to overcome the division and bitterness between the pro and anti-whaling groups and thereby improve the effectiveness of the Commission as a whole. This thesis follows the debate within the International Whaling Commission between 2006 and 2010, and using primary official sources and first hand observations, examines those issues affecting the future of the IWC. It investigates and comments on the objectives and agendas of both pro- and anti-whaling groups within the IWC, together with the non-government organisations involved in the whaling issue, and suggests courses of action for all parties. Individual chapters address issues such as the normalization of the International Whaling Commission, the modernisation of the International Convention for the Regulation of Whaling, the Hogarth Initiatives and other initiatives for improving the effectiveness of the regime. The thesis investigates two possible outcomes of the current initiatives: a continuation of the unsatisfactory status quo, and a radical replacement of the current regime with an equally unsatisfactory situation, including separate conventions for pro and anti-whaling nations. The thesis concludes that an alternative falling between these two extremes is both possible and achievable, and explores ways in which this reform might be accomplished in the near future.


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