Target: Amund Ringdal, Norwegian Secretary of the Ministry of Trade, Industry and Fisheries
Goal: Applaud the withdrawal of government subsidies from the seal-hunting industry
The Norwegian government has recently cut $1.8 billion in funding from the country’s seal-hunting industry, effectively ending the seal trade. The government subsidizes 80 percent of all seal-hunting activities in Norway, resulting in the deaths of 12,000 animals annually. Without the funding, the country’s three seal-hunting boats will be operating at a deficit and be forced to close operations.
The Norway government claims that the subsidies will be cut for economic reasons, rather than increasing pressure from animal rights organizations and the European Union, which banned the seal trade in 2009. So far, 34 countries across the world have banned the sale of commercial seal products. Though the Norwegian government is citing financial reasons, it is nonetheless a huge victory for the thousands of harp seals that will be spared from brutal hunting methods.
Seal hunters shoot seals or bludgeon them with clubs, dragging them across the ice with hook-like weapons while they are still alive and allowing them to bleed out. Sometimes, seals that have survived the beating and dragging process are skinned alive for their furs. The majority of seals killed are less than one-year-old, and the cubs too young to kill can be left defenseless without their mothers.
The decision is a win for the taxpayers of Norway, who will no longer pay to fund a cruel and unprofitable industry, as well as Norway’s seal population, which will be allowed to thrive in the absence of government-funded hunting boats. Sign the petition below to commend Norway’s decision to cut seal-hunting subsidies.
Dear Mr. Amund Ringdal,
The Norwegian government recently announced that it will be withdrawing $1.8 billion in subsidies from the seal-hunting industry. As the industry is about 80 percent taxpayer funded, the seal hunters will be forced to close their operations.
Annually, around 12,000 harp seals are shot, clubbed, or otherwise beaten in one of the most barbaric animal industries in existence. They are dragged with boat hooks into piles, and from there left to bleed out or even sometimes skinned alive. While the Norwegian government stated economic reasoning, this is a victory for harp seals as well as taxpayers. We, the undersigned, commend your decision to take government funding away from the seal hunting industry.
[Your Name Here]
Photo credit: Matthieu Godbout via Creative Commons