Sunday, April 10, 2011

Of Fishing, Whaling and Sanctions

Pressure builds on Iceland over its current fishing policies, and not just from the European Union.
The UK's Whale and Dolphin Conservation Group is urging Brits buying seafood to question its source, claiming a lot of Icelandic fish comes from companies linked to the whaling industry: “The UK wholesalers buying Icelandic fish from whalers should be encouraged by the public to look elsewhere."
Iceland's about to be hit by EU sanctions after refusing to halt its self-declared 146,000 ton mackerel quota. The Faroe Islands (FI), which last month gave itself an even larger quota (75% larger than 2010!), faces the same.
smaller-scale than Japan,
but just as deadly...
In 2009, Marks+Spencer and Waitrose (UK retail chains that buy large amounts of fish from Iceland) publicly distanced themselves from fishing companies connected to whaling. And at least five major European food distributors terminated their FI seafood contracts specifically because of the continuing kills.
Iceland catches minke and endangered fin commercially. FI conducts numerous pilot whale kills annually.
Elin Brimheim Heinesen (a FI reader of this blog) made the point that "the more people outside the Faroes condemn them and punish them by not buying their export goods or by not travelling to the islands, the more isolated will the Faroese be from the rest of the world, and the more they will stick to their old traditions - which in the end means more pilot whales will be killed." And while that viewpoint has some validity, it avoids the positive outcome of ceasing whaling, and gaining more income from fishing and increased tourism.
Last year I received a comment from a Faroe Islander, bragging that because they'd killed a record number of pilot whales in 2010, the freezers were full. So let Sea Shepherd "bring it on", because they wouldn't NEED to kill ANY pilot whales in 2011. Riiiiiight! If that's the case, then why has the "grindadrĂ¡p" (the annual FI massacring of pilot whales) recommenced this year? Yes, an early start with the slaughter of 60 pilot whales in the last few weeks. the meantime, Sea Shepherd is returning to FI this northern summer with Steve Irwin and Gojira, fresh from trumping the Japanese in Antarctica.
PS: 11 April 2011 - As if it doesn't have enough problems, Iceland has just voted NOT to repay UK and the Netherlands for £3-billion of deposits lost in a failed online bank! Does Iceland have a death wish, or what??!!
PS: 02 August 2011 - Norway has formally banned all mackerel and mackerel products from Iceland and the Faroe Islands in protest at the two countries' self-declared fishing quotas.


BigMac said...

You keep on do you?

You really want to see Faroese blood, is that it?

Your personal problem with a sustainable, perfectly reasonable harvest of naturalia in Faroe Island, is resulting in a persecution and vendetta against honourable and decent people.

Your irrational issue with a task considered normal all over the world (killing and eating an animal), makes you blind and makes you desperately include matters which are not remotely relevant to the case.

One such matter is the mackerel quota of FI. Where did that come from? Is the mackerel quota now a part of your whaling issue?
Or is it just a mean to spread as much dirt as possible about FI?

Your link to the article is dead, so I can only imagine where you pick up your information. I am sure it is not from the Faroese side. If you only bothered and behaved in professional way, you where interested in the full story. But I guess not it serves your errand to bring information about the background for the Faroese claims in relation to the giant claims of mastodon EU and Norway who treats microstates like FI as an irritating mosquito. Sounds familiar to you?

Anyway a dispute about fishingrigths is just a trivial subject, always present between fishing nations.

However this is none of your business, this is internal affairs between the participating parts.
And don’t give me the song about some sudden concern for the environment in the north Atlantic Ocean, since this clearly is just about adding fuel to your fire.

Writer Of The Purple Sage... said...

Dear BigMac:

I blog about things that interest me globally. I can't help it if that nurtures your feelings of isolationist paranoia.
The mackerel quota tied in to the whaling issue, through the decision by various retail chains to boycott Icelandic fisheries associated with whaling - just as was done to FI. It's all there in my post...
The missing link came from a reputable source, Press Association. I can no longer find that link (thanks for alerting me), so have replaced with a similar story from UPI which contains the same information...
Should Iceland be paranoid that I also linked in the issue of its voting not to repay £3-billion of deposits to UK and Netherlands? No, it's just part of the bigger picture...
And it would appear as if the mackerel issue is not, as you say, "just a trivial subject" but should be treated seriously, as it is escalating. Spain has been heavily penalised by EU for the next 5yrs because it almost doubled its quota! Iceland landed only 367t in 2005 yet decided to land 150,000t this year: ridiculous! As just last week it was announced the Faroese Pelagic Organisation's NE Atlantic mackerel fishery will not receive certification. The decisionmakers said "the Faroes and Iceland together are threatening the long term survival of the NE Atlantic mackerel stock by their disgraceful behaviour. They always boast that compared to the EU they have well-managed and sustainable fisheries. Now the intolerable and unsustainable behaviour of the Faroes has been exposed by the decision not to award MSC accreditation to the Faroese mackerel fishery." Very strong words - not "just a trivial subject" at all!
This is sure to be an economic blow to FI, but no, I do NOT "really want to see Faroese blood" - that has been made abundantly clear in my many whaling-related posts, as well you know.
My issue is well-documented as being with the vicious butchery of the grind. I'm sure as in any country there are many FI who are "honourable and decent people" - it's most unfortunate that many perpetuate a brutal tradition that alienates them from the 'real world'.