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Friday, March 24, 2023

The first great energy transition: How humanity gave up whaling | The Guardian

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The decline of the whaling industry, the emergence of whale song as a symbol of animal intelligence and the role of public activism in protecting cetaceans offer lessons for addressing the climate crisis. 

Whale songs consist of rhyming phrases and patterns, changing over time and migrating from west to east. Previously hunted for blubber, whales became a low-cost product during the era of “Yankee whaling” in the mid-19th century. Technological advances led to the development of fleets and factory ships, which harvested the animals instead of hunting them. The whales then became important in warfare and feeding starving nations in the 20th century. Whaling all but ended in 1986 after the International Whaling Commission issued a worldwide moratorium due to the dwindling whale population. The end of industrial whaling came almost overnight and serves as an example of how people taking an interest and getting involved can bring about change. 

Source: https://www.theguardian.com/environment/2023/mar/11/the-first-great-energy-transition-how-humanity-gave-up-whaling 


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