It was an unthinkable scenario that Ayukahama a small harbor on Japan’s northern coast where whale poachers have come from, seem to be an unlikely place to find opposition of Japan’s Antarctic whaling.
The local residents have taken cognizance to speak out their sentiments against the government’s run Antarctic hunts which according to them have invited worldwide criticisms to their activities.
The Japanese government is confronted with domestic and international pressure to limit their so called research whaling.
Tokyo, however, seems cannot do anything due to a combination of embedded bureaucratic interests and nationalist passions that have previously stop any action to limit the thirty year old whaling program activities.
Shohei Yonemoto, a professor of environmental policy at the University of Tokyo, admitted that Japan is now entering a new period of whaling issue.
It clearly manifests a strong for change more than ever. The US and other anti whaling nations are presently working to close the gap in the 1986 moratorium on commercial whaling by allowing whaling contending nations like Japan, Norway and Iceland, to resume a much more limited commercial hunts.
They expect an agreement can be reached at the International Whaling Commission’s meeting comes June 2010 in Morocco.
With Prime Minister Yukio Hatoyama at the helm of the Japanese government, environmentalists and whaling experts were encouraged of the development, that the prime minister himself is determined to eradicate the obsolete bureaucratic programs that the whaling industry represents.
It was part of Hatoyama’s party promise prior to the summer election, of revamping Japan’s post war order which also includes whaling.
Since Hatoyama’s election as prime minister, it is still remain to be seen as to when the change has to take place.
Japan’s whaling expedition last November, a backdrop was noted in their catch by 51% of what was planned upon their return this month from Antarctic. Their catch of 507 whales was well below of their targeted plan of 985.
Due to the oversensitivity issue on whaling, fewer people are eating whale these days and whaling poachers are numbered according to local residents. Does it meant that whaling industry in Japan is dying?