Greenland’s notoriously commercialized aboriginal whaling hunt was tabled today because of criticism and lack of support from commissioners who represent other IWC member-nations. Greenland is seeking to increase its whale quota in both tonnage and species killed despite the well documented practice of selling their quota to the public in supermarkets to anyone willing to pay for it. Additionally, a large percentage of restaurants in Greenland that were surveyed responded that they serve gourmet-priced whale meat to tourists. The commissioner for Greenland agreed that the commercial practices exist and was not in the least apologetic.
The US delegation under President Obama’s administration strongly supports this definition of aboriginal whaling. This is what Japan wants because it seeks approval of Small Type Coastal Whaling – the same type of commercial cultural whaling the US endorses in Greenland. In effect, the US is overturning the moratorium on commercial whaling in place since 1986 – only they are doing it in slow-motion.
Overnight, it is expected that Greenland will reconsider its request for an increase in its quota. If it does, it appears the IWC on Wednesday or Thursday will approve its commercial aboriginal quota at the same level as was approved in previous years.