Canada Bans Captivity Of Dolphins, Whales And Marine Mammals

Last week, the British Columbia Court of Appeal ruled that the Vancouver Board of Parks and Recreation does have the authority to tell the Vancouver Aquarium to phase out dolphin and whale captivity. Moving the city one step closer to a day when no cetacean has to endure the misery of being confined to a cramped tank as Canada finally bans the captivity of dolphins and whales.

The announcement comes after a decision made last March by the Vancouver Park Board to amend the Parks Control Bylaw to prohibit cetacean captivity at the Vancouver Aquarium. Cetaceans are marine mammals, including dolphins, porpoises, and whales.

The motion was introduced after two captive beluga whales die only nine days apart The initial motion was introduced after the two remaining beluga whales at the Vancouver Aquarium died in November 2016. Aurora, who was 29 years old, passed away only nine days after the death of her calf, 21-year-old Qila. Following their deaths, animal rights groups and activists called on the Vancouver Park Board to prohibit cetacean captivity in order to end the tragic and unnecessary suffering endured by animals like these belugas. Source: Twitter

THE BILL WAS SUPPORTED BY ALL PARTIES ACROSS THE POLITICAL SPECTRUM

Cetaceans such as dolphins, porpoises and whales will no longer be kept in Canadian aquariums after the government moved one step closer to passing a bill that prohibits their captivity. 

The bill, S-203, was first proposed in 2015, and it has finally made through the House of Commons after three years of intense legislative battles. With the bill, Canada has taken another step toward becoming more environmentally responsible.

Everyone across the political spectrum is determined to take better care of our environment

The most encouraging thing about the bill is that there was support across the political parties. This means that environmental issues are not subject to party politics, and everyone across the political spectrum is determined to take better care of our environment. 

This is a good thing because environmental issues should not be subject to party politics, as we all share the same planet.

The practice of keeping these creatures for ‘entertainment’ must end Activists are still lobbying for the transfer of the remaining 55 cetaceans in Marineland to an open-water sanctuary. After the release of shocking documentaries like Black Fish, people are becoming more conscious of how their activities affect the environment. Source: Pixabay/Schmid-Reportagen
The practice of keeping these creatures for ‘entertainment’ must end Activists are still lobbying for the transfer of the remaining 55 cetaceans in Marineland to an open-water sanctuary. After the release of shocking documentaries like Black Fish, people are becoming more conscious of how their activities affect the environment. Source: Pixabay/Schmid-Reportagen

WHAT THE BILL MEANS LOOKING AHEAD

Bill S-203 bans the breeding of dolphins and whales in captivity, and it amends the current criminal code to include this as a crime. 

This means that Canadian marine parks like Marineland can still keep any cetaceans currently under their care, but they cannot breed a new generation or capture more in the wild. 

The bill also prohibits the importing of cetacean sperm, tissues, or embryos. The goal is to slowly phase out the practice of keeping dolphins and whales in captivity, and the government wants to discourage any further practices of the sort.

Bill S-203 bans the breeding of dolphins and whales in captivity It also amends the current criminal code to include this as a crime. Source: Pixabay/Analogicus
Bill S-203 bans the breeding of dolphins and whales in captivity It also amends the current criminal code to include this as a crime. Source: Pixabay/Analogicus

SINCE THE RELEASE OF SHOCKING DOCUMENTARIES LIKE ‘BLACK FISH’ PEOPLE ARE BECOMING MORE CONSCIOUS

Activists are still lobbying for the transfer of the remaining 55 cetaceans in Marineland to an open-water sanctuary. 

Especially after the release of shocking documentaries like Black Fish, people are becoming more conscious of how their activities affect the environment. 

Lobbying for changes on the government level is one of the key tools for changing the way we do things because individual activism can only go so far. With a law in place, more people will be inclined to follow suit.

Canada has also passed Bill S-238, which bans the import of sharks’ fins

The country’s political parties may disagree on many things, but it is encouraging to know that they all agree on enacting legislation that will protect the environment. 

Cetaceans can continue to swim freely and they will no longer end up in a Canadian aquarium for the viewing pleasure of humans. Nice one, Canada!

Below: 10 Surprising Superpowers of Dolphins 

Source: Bright Vibes / TheThings.com

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