Local Campaigns Philosophy
Earthrace is involved in a number of local Conservation Campaigns. Mostly these are used to encourage public awareness about issues we believe are important, and also to encourage governments to enact legislation providing better protection of wildlife. This may be through establishing Marine Protected Areas, increased enforcement, or reduction of quota. Below are some examples.
Cetacean Captivity Campaign
Earthrace Conservation is opposed to all forms of Cetacean (whale and dolphin) captivity. Some of our chapters have been regular protesters outside Sea World, SeaQuarium and other institutions with Orca and dolphins on display for public amusement. Arguments of public education do not stack up against the barbaric nature of taking intelligent animals from the wild and locking them up for the rest of their lives.
Faroe Islands Campaign
We have a local Earthrace Chapter in the Faroe Islands that is working with the government and public to eliminate Pilot Whale Hunting (known locally as the Grind). Bethune and a number of Earthrace crew have traveled there and met with Media, Whalers, Anti-Whalers, School Groups and others. Last year Bethune was given an audience with the Prime Minister, as well as the Chief Medical Officer. Earthrace remains committed to ending Pilot Whale Hunting in the Faroes, but it will take a long time to make this a reality. Work on these Local Campaigns is ongoing.
Long Finned Eel Campaign
The Long Finned eel is under threat, especially from commercial harvesting. Amazingly, despite the eel being classified as threatened, commercial fishing continues. Which is why we’re asking for your help.
There is a petition underway and we’d like you to sign this. It will be presented to the government later in the year, and asks for a “Cessation of Commercial Harvesting of all Long Finned Eel.”
Trinidad Turtle Campaign
Another one of our Local Campaigns we linked with local NGO “Trini Eco Warriors”. We met with local Fishermen to understand turtle hunting and its role in the local economy. We also met Government Officials and argued why legal Turtle Hunting should be abolished. We purchased a turtle locally, released it with a tracker, and ran a media campaign highlighting that the Turtles were pelagic, that they traveled through the waters of many countries, and it was unfair for Trinidad to harvest them. The government passed a law 10 months later banning all Turtle Hunting in Trinidad and Tobago.
Monster Shark Tournament
This fishing tournament was held annually at Martha’s Vineyard in the USA, with target species including Thresher, Porbeagle and Mako Sharks, all listed as threatened. At a time when the rest of the world is protecting sharks, or at the very least, releasing them, we believe this tournament sent a poor message of killing sharks. Members of Earthrace attended the tournament to engage with fishermen and tournament organizers. Due to the pressure, there is no more tournament at Martha’s Vineyard. The last one took place in July 2013. This was the end of the annual Monster Shark Tournament on Martha’s Vineyard after 27 years of existence.