There are hints that Japan’s review of government spending in a number of areas could diminish the billions of yen spent each year to sustain the country’s annual whaling excursions to the oceans around Antarctica. Greenpeace sent an alert around about the budget review just before President Obama flew to Japan. For the moment, it’s unclear whether the whaling program — which Japan has long cast as important scientific research but many biologists and activists decry — is in danger, according to our Tokyo reporters. There’ll be updates here as needed.
In the meantime, Paul Watson, who has brought the skill set of P. T. Barnum (and some would say Blackbeard) to the realm of marine conservation, recently unveiled the Ady Gil, a new weapon in the whale wars between his group, the Sea Shepherd Conservation Society, and Japan. The high-speed boat, named for the California donor who paid two-thirds of its $1.5 million price tag, is ready to chase Japan’s speedy whale-hunting vessels when the killing begins.
THANK YOU SEA SHEPHERD!