The appeal to the President of the Russian Federation
Dear Vladimir Vladimirovich!
On 9 May 2019, I completed a solo voyage aboard a rowboat from New Zealand to Cape Horn. Spending 154 days in the Southern Ocean gave me the opportunity to observe the environment every day. My logbooks from the first circumnavigatory journey I completed in 1991 contain daily accounts about dolphins and whales approaching the boat. Over the 154 days I spent at sea this year, I can say that I only saw whales a handful of times, and, unfortunately, our country bears some blame for this.
In Srednyaya Bay in the Primorskiy Region, near Nakhodka, dozens of beluga whales and orcas are being kept in enclosures, awaiting sales to foreign oceanariums.
Whales and dolphins belong to all of humanity. They are an integral part of the world’s oceans. The capture of orcas and belugas only takes place in our country, as it is forbidden in all others.
The people and companies making money from their sale aren’t just parasitically exploiting our country’s environmental resources, but exploit resources belonging to the whole world.
Citizens of Russia, Australia, New Zealand and Chile have requested that we stop the barbaric business taking place in our country.
I know of your enormous contribution to preserving the populations of the Far-Eastern leopard and Amur tiger. Let us stop the extermination of whales too! As an honorary resident of the city of Nakhodka, and having lived for more than thirty years in the region, I feel ashamed before the citizens of our country and all of the countries of the world.
The whales currently located in those “whale prisons” were born in the ocean and must live in their natural habitat, not as someone’s property. I am sure that ecotourism and whale-watching will bring more to the Primorskiy Region than the capture of the whales and their sale to China.
I appeal to you, as the Chairman of the Board of Trustees of the Russian Geographical Society, to initiate the drafting of a law banning the capture of marine mammals in Russia for subsequent resale to Russian and foreign oceanariums.
I am counting on your support in prohibiting the capture of whales for water amusement parks, just as in the past you have prohibited the capture of the Far-Eastern leopard for zoos.
Full member of the Russian Geographical Society