Australia to deliver further fund for non-lethal whale research program

Source:Xinhua Published: 2013-7-24 9:17:40

Australia will deliver further fund to build on its non-lethal whale research program and for consolidating its global leadership in whale conservation, Minister for the Environment Mark Butler announced Wednesday.

According to him, the extra 6 million AU dollars (almost 5.56 million US dollars) funding will support new research, including an Antarctic blue whale research voyage in 2014/15 to examine their post-exploitation recovery and explain their important role in the Southern Ocean ecosystem.

This funding is in addition to the 32 million AU dollars ( almost 29.63 million US dollars) investment already made by the Australian government in 2008 into alternatives to invasive whale research.

And this funding would be provided over two years under the International Whales and Marine Mammal Conservation Initiative which underpins a broader commitment to the conservation and protection of the ocean's giants.

"This funding supports the comprehensive reform agenda Australia has taken to the International Whaling Commission and sends a clear message to the world about Australia's determination to ensure whale research is conducted through non-lethal means," Mark Butler said in a statement.

And he confirmed that the work carried out under the Australian- initiated Southern Ocean Research Partnership had delivered huge dividends which will contribute markedly to the international scientific community's understanding of these different whale species.

"Innovative non-lethal research technology and techniques trailed by Australia during this year's Antarctic Blue Whale Project research expedition were so successful they will now become the model for other whale researchers across the world," Mark Butler said.

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