Target: United Nations International Maritime Organization
Goal: Protect whales from deadly ship traffic in the San Francisco Bay.
Whales are frequently drawn into the shallow areas of the San Francisco Bay in the pursuit of the plentiful krill that live there. The problem is, many ships use the three main shipping lanes in the bay to transport cargo in and out, putting the whales in danger of coming into contact with dangerous propeller blades. Just last month, a whale washed up on shore, and it was discovered that a collision with a propeller caused its death.
The majority of these victims include blue, humpback, and fin whales, all of which are considered endangered. Blue whales are an especially declining species. Only 2,000 exist in the Northeast Pacific area, and there are only about 10,000 worldwide. In order to reduce the amount of whale deaths, a plan has been proposed that will reroute ships that sail too close to reported whales.
This plan will also establish better methods to track whales, in order to better alert ships to their locations. Sailors aboard commercial sailing vessels will be trained to report the exact location of whales when they are spotted. This will allow them to signal to other ships in the area, so they may alter their course to avoid the whale, or slow down. This real time whale monitoring network will significantly reduce the number of collisions.
While this plan will most likely take effect next year, it still needs to undergo a final review by the United Nations International Maritime Organization. If this plan goes into effect, it will provide a good example to the rest of the world, and will have a good chance of becoming a mandatory practice worldwide. Show your support for this plan by signing this petition.
Dear United Nations International Maritime Organization,
I wanted to let you know that I support the proposed plan to protect whales in the San Francisco Bay. I understand that many species, including the humpback, fin, and blue whales are endangered, and collisions with ships in the bay only serve to threaten their already dwindling numbers. I fully support the measures that this plan will entail, and believe that better training and monitoring systems will not only benefit whales in the San Francisco area, but may also prompt other countries to establish similar plans.
Although the plan has already been approved, I understand that you are in charge of the final review. I would like you to know that I support this plan, and will be looking forward to seeing it implemented in the future. Thank you for taking progressive steps to protect these important species.
[Your Name Here]
Photo Credit: kohane