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The World is a Complicated Place: "Eat whale and save the planet" - Norwegian lobby Answered

This strikes me as laughable, but at least the issue is being properly framed.

"Eat whale and save the planet" - Norwegian lobby

By Alister Doyle, Environment Correspondent

OSLO (Reuters) - Eat a whale and save the planet, a Norwegian pro-whaling lobby said on Monday of a study showing that harpooning the giant mammals is less damaging to the climate than farming livestock.

Environmental group Greenpeace dismissed the survey, saying almost every kind of food was more climate friendly than meat.

The survey, focused on whale boats' fuel use, showed that a kilo (2.2 lbs) of whale meat represented just 1.9 kilo (4.2 lbs) of greenhouse gases against 15.8 for beef, 6.4 for pork and 4.6 for chicken.

"Basically it turns out that the best thing you can do for the planet is to eat whale meat compared to other types of meat," said Rune Froevik of the High North Alliance, which represents the interests of coastal communities in the Arctic.

"Greenhouse gas emissions caused by one meal of beef are the equivalent of eight meals of whale meat," the study said.

The Norwegian-based Alliance said it was the first to measure the "carbon footprint" of whaling. Fish and seafood was comparable to whale meat with relatively low emissions.

Norway and Japan, the two main whaling nations, are seeking new arguments to promote whale meat after years of condemnation from anti-whaling nations for breaking with a 1986 moratorium on all hunts meant to save many whale species from extinction.

Oslo says, for instance, that the small minke whales it hunts are plentiful in the North Atlantic and that a 2008 Norwegian quota of 1,052 animals will not harm stocks. The meat is eaten mostly as steaks or in stews


We could eat humans and save the planet too .... Who wants a Japanese sushi ? or a Norwegian smorbrod ?


10 years ago

No doubt the carbon footprint of human meat is even less. You just go outside and smack the first person you meet over the head with a hammer; no fuel consumed at all! (and they're comparing the carbon cost of harvesting whale with the carbon cost for the full production cycle of beef, right? Bogus!)

We've already found that simply hunting whales is unsustainable, they'd have to be actively farmed, somehow. That would inevitably increase the carbon footprint of whale meat.

The other point is that whale meat apparently tastes bad - the Japanese whalers try using the excuse that whale meat is a traditional part of the Japanese diet, but, since the Japanese public discovered beef and pork, they can only sell most of the meat they already catch to dogfood manufacturers.