What ever happened to “Save the whales”?
In the 1970s and ’80s, it was the quintessential environmentalist cause, the one that anyone who cared about the earth could unequivocally rally behind. It was the topic of international negotiations and treaties, and endless campaigns from environmental groups. (“Uh-oh, that guy down the street with the long hair has a clipboard, and is that a Greenpeace T-shirt he’s wearing? Quick, act busy!”)
These days, we’ve got bigger things to worry about -- climate change, mass extinction that could wipe out half of the species on the planet by mid-century, and a human population rocketing toward 9 billion.
So what happened to the whales, and all the rah-rah activist efforts to save them? Turns out: Not a whole lot. Sure, some whale species are doing much better, but overall, whaling regulation is still in the same place that it has been since 1982. Environmental groups like Greenpeace and Sea Shepherd are still fighting, and most countries have banned whaling, but a few maverick nations, including Japan and Norway, continue to kill them.
Leah Gerber thinks she has a solution.