World’s Most Endangered Whales to Get Recovery Plan at Long Last — Take Action
North Pacific right whales, among the world’s most endangered marine mammals, are finally getting a federal recovery plan. The National Marine Fisheries Service proposed the recovery plan this week, after the Center for Biological Diversity threatened to sue last March because of agency delays.
There are as few as 30 individual North Pacific right whales left in the Bering Sea and Gulf of Alaska, and only a few hundred in Russia’s Okhotsk Sea. The whales are extremely vulnerable to ship strikes, oil development and spills, and entanglement in fishing gear. Although the proposed recovery plan provides a much-needed strategy for additional research, it doesn’t provide a clear roadmap for reducing those threats. The public has 45 days to comment on the plan — and we’re pushing to ensure it includes stronger protections.
“North Pacific right whales have a long road to recovery, but we hope it starts here,” said Sarah Uhlemann, a Center attorney. “With just a small number of these great animals left in the world, the loss of even one of them could threaten this population’s existence.”