H.Con.Res.216 - Expressing the sense of the Congress regarding the policy of the United States at the 55th Annual Meeting of the International Whaling Commission.108th Congress (2003-2004)
Concurrent ResolutionHide Overview icon-hide
|Sponsor:||Rep. Delahunt, William D. [D-MA-10] (Introduced 06/12/2003)|
|Committees:||House - International Relations|
|Latest Action:||06/12/2003 Referred to the House Committee on International Relations. (All Actions)|
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Text: H.Con.Res.216 — 108th Congress (2003-2004)All Bill Information (Except Text)
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Introduced in House (06/12/2003)
[Congressional Bills 108th Congress] [From the U.S. Government Printing Office] [H. Con. Res. 216 Introduced in House (IH)] 108th CONGRESS 1st Session H. CON. RES. 216 Expressing the sense of the Congress regarding the policy of the United States at the 55th Annual Meeting of the International Whaling Commission. _______________________________________________________________________ IN THE HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES June 12, 2003 Mr. Delahunt (for himself, Mr. Gilchrest, Mr. George Miller of California, Mr. Smith of New Jersey, Mr. Farr, Mr. Greenwood, Mr. Allen, and Mr. Abercrombie) submitted the following concurrent resolution; which was referred to the Committee on International Relations _______________________________________________________________________ CONCURRENT RESOLUTION Expressing the sense of the Congress regarding the policy of the United States at the 55th Annual Meeting of the International Whaling Commission. Whereas whales have very low reproductive rates, making whale populations extremely vulnerable to pressure from commercial whaling; Whereas whales migrate throughout the world's oceans and international cooperation is required to successfully conserve and protect whale stocks; Whereas in 1946 a significant number of the nations of the world adopted the International Convention for the Regulation of Whaling, which established the International Whaling Commission to provide for the proper conservation of whale stocks; Whereas the Commission adopted a moratorium on commercial whaling in 1982 in order to conserve and promote the recovery of whale stocks, many of which had been hunted to near extinction by the commercial whaling industry; Whereas the Commission has designated the Indian Ocean and the ocean waters around Antarctica as whale sanctuaries to further enhance the recovery of whale stocks; Whereas many nations of the world have designated waters under their jurisdiction as whale sanctuaries where commercial whaling is prohibited, and additional regional whale sanctuaries have been proposed by nations that are members of the Commission; Whereas one nation has joined the Commission under questionable authority and claims it has a reservation to the moratorium that is not recognized by all other Commission members; Whereas two member nations currently have reservations to the Commission's moratorium on commercial whaling, and one member nation is currently conducting commercial whaling operations in spite of the moratorium and the protests of other nations; Whereas the Commission has adopted several resolutions at recent meetings asking member nations to halt commercial whaling activities conducted under reservation to the moratorium and to refrain from issuing special permits for research involving the killing of whales; Whereas one member nation of the Commission has taken a reservation to the Commission's Southern Ocean Sanctuary and also continues to conduct unnecessary lethal scientific whaling in the Southern Ocean and in the North Pacific Ocean; Whereas whale meat and blubber are being sold commercially from whales killed pursuant to such unnecessary lethal scientific whaling, further undermining the moratorium on commercial whaling; Whereas the Commission's Scientific Committee has repeatedly expressed serious concerns about the scientific need for such lethal research and recognizes the importance of demonstrating and expanding the use of non- lethal scientific research methods; Whereas one member nation in the past unsuccessfully sought an exemption allowing commercial whaling of up to 50 minke whales, now uses a scientific permit for these same vessels to take 50 minke whales, and continues to seek avenues to allow lethal takes of whales by vessels from specific communities in a manner that would undermine the moratorium on commercial whaling; Whereas more than 7,500 whales have been killed in lethal scientific whaling programs since the adoption of the commercial whaling moratorium and the lethal take of whales under scientific permits has increased both in quantity and species, with species now including minke, Bryde's, sei, and sperm whales, and a new proposal has been offered to include fin whales for the first time; Whereas the first international trade of whale meat in 15 years occurred last year between two member countries, and other member countries have stated their intentions to engage in international trade of whale products, despite a ban on such trade under the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species; and Whereas engaging in commercial whaling under reservation and lethal scientific whaling undermines the conservation program of the Commission: Now, therefore, be it Resolved by the House of Representatives (the Senate concurring), That it is the sense of the Congress that-- (1) at the 55th Annual Meeting of the International Whaling Commission the United States should-- (A) remain firmly opposed to commercial whaling; (B) initiate and support efforts to ensure that all activities conducted under reservations to the Commission's moratorium or sanctuaries are ceased; (C) not recognize the reservation to the moratorium against commercial whaling claimed by one nation that has joined the Commission under questionable authority; (D) oppose the lethal taking of whales for scientific purposes unless such lethal taking is specifically authorized by the Scientific Committee of the Commission to be necessary for scientific purposes, seek support for expanding the use of non-lethal research methods, and seek to end the sale of whale meat and blubber from whales killed for unnecessary lethal scientific research; (E) seek the Commission's support for specific efforts by member nations to end trade in whale meat; (F) support the permanent protection of whale populations through the establishment of whale sanctuaries in which commercial whaling is prohibited; and (G) support efforts to expand data collection on whale populations, monitor and reduce whale bycatch and other incidental impacts, create a Conservation Committee, and otherwise expand whale conservation efforts; (2) at the 13th Conference of the Parties to the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species, the United States should oppose all efforts to reopen international trade in whale meat or downlist any whale population; (3) the United States should make full use of all appropriate diplomatic mechanisms, relevant international laws and agreements, and other appropriate mechanisms to implement the goals set forth in paragraphs (1) and (2); and (4) if the Secretary of Commerce certifies to the President, under section 8(a)(2) of the Fishermen's Protective Act of 1967 (22 U.S.C. 1978(a)(2)), that nationals of a foreign country are engaging in trade or a taking which diminishes the effectiveness of the Convention, then the United States should take appropriate steps at its disposal pursuant to Federal law to convince such foreign country to cease such trade or taking. <all>