Promoting whale-friendly shipping policies, this is what IFAW is doing at the International Maritime Organization
Why is IFAW at a meeting on shipping??? Well the International Maritime Organization (IMO) is the United Nations’ Specialized Agency responsible for shipping. Governments, the shipping industry, ship owners, operators, shipping registers, classification societies, port authorities, oil companies, cruise industry and others meet on regular basis at the IMO to regulate different aspects of maritime transport. So what is IFAW doing there and what do we have to do with shipping regulations? Well, whaling is not the only threat that whales are facing and international shipping is posing great pressure on marine life around the world in terms of pollution, collisions with ships and underwater noise. Considering that over 90% of all goods are transported by sea and this trend is increasing, oceans appear to be a very busy, noise and pretty dangerous place for whales and other marine creatures.
Over the past few years, IFAW has been working alongside governments and the industry at the IMO, especially its Marine Environmental Protection Committee (MEPC), to promote measures to minimize the risks posed by shipping on marine life. In particular, IFAW has been playing a crucial role in the discussions to reduce the number of whales killed by collisions with ships and to reduce underwater noise pollution from large commercial ships. Thank to our full consultative status with the IMO, IFAW will continue campaigning for cleaner, quieter and safer oceans for whales and other marine creatures and promoting international maritime policies and regulations that benefit both whales and people.