Policy ForumEcology

Do the Largest Protected Areas Conserve Whales or Whalers?

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Science  28 Jan 2005:
Vol. 307, Issue 5709, pp. 525-526
DOI: 10.1126/science.1106120

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The authors of this Policy Forum were recently commissioned by the International Whaling Commission (IWC) Scientific Committee to provide an external review of the Southern Ocean Sanctuary. This sanctuary was designed to restrict the commercial harvest of whales from high latitude feeding grounds during the austral summer. Their review and modeling results suggest that IWC sanctuaries are not ecologically justified in their current form.. They advocate the return to a scientific, rather than political, approach to sanctuary designation and management, within the larger context of the IWC and other ocean management and conservation initiatives.