The New Zealand Government will continue to fight to establish a whale sanctuary in the South Pacific, despite defeat for the proposal at an international conference. The sanctuary proposal was lost 18 – 11 with four abstenations in the vote on 3rd July by the International Whaling Commission (IWC) meeting in Adelaide.
The proposal was beaten by some smaller Caribbean nations such as St Vincent and Antigua lining up with the pro-whaling faction led by Japan.
The proposed sanctuary would have linked up with the already established Southern Ocean and Indian Ocean sanctuaries to protect the great whale species as they migrate from Antarctic feeding grounds to their breeding grounds near the equator.
The next step is to take the South Pacific whale sanctuary proposal to the annual general meeting of the IWC in Britain next year.