Japan Restarts Commercial Whaling
Japanese hunters killed at least two whales Monday in the first commercial whale hunt in more than 30 years.
Japan stopped commercial whaling in 1988 after the International Whaling Commission, or IWC, banned the killing of whales. However, last December, Japan said it would leave the IWC on June 30.
Japan has long disputed the idea that whales are endangered.
Even with the ban in place, for years Japan continued to hunt whales for what it said was scientific research. However, critics have long said Japan was not truthful about its purpose. They argued that the activity was commercial because Japan sold the meat collected from the hunts.
In the 2017-2018 whaling season, Japanese sailors killed 333 whales in Antarctic waters. More than 120 of them were pregnant females.
The whaling ships sailed Monday from the port of Kushiro, on the northern island of Hokkaido. They will hunt in Japanese waters for three sorts of whales: minke, sei and Bryde's.
Japan's return to commercial whaling has caused international criticism.
Kitty Block is president of Humane Society International. She was angry about Japan's decision and said Japan is "undermining" its international image for a product that is no longer in demand.
Whaling is a very small industry in Japan. Government data says that whale accounts for 0.1 percent of meat eaten in the country. The industry employs a few hundred people.
But some experts say Japan's move might help some whales because it will mean that Japan will stop hunting whales in the Southern Ocean, the Atlantic Ocean and other sensitive areas.
Japan's Fisheries Agency set a limit of 227 whale kills for this year. Japan caught as many as 1,200 whales a year in the name of scientific research.
Patrick Ramage is the head of the International Fund for Animal Welfare. He welcomed Japan's move. He said, "What we are seeing is the beginning of the end of Japanese whaling."
I'm Caty Weaver.
1.at least 至少
He's been away for at least a week.
2.international image 国际形象
Even more than other countries, France has a distorted international image.
3.scientific research 科学研究
Our scientific research is second to none.
4.in demand 受欢迎的；销路好的
He was much in demand as a lecturer in the US.
5.Even with the ban in place, for years Japan continued to hunt whales for what it said was scientific research.
in place 到位
We already have our core team in place.
Are all your weapons in place?
6.Japan's Fisheries Agency set a limit of 227 whale kills for this year.
set a limit 对...加以限制
They have to set a limit to the expense of the trip.
In my opinion, you had better set a limit to the expense of your trip.
在国际捕鲸委员会（IWC）禁止捕杀鲸鱼后，日本于1988年停止了商业捕鲸活动 。然而，去年12月，日本表示将于6月30日退出国际捕鲸委员会 。
即便禁令在身，日本多年来仍在继续捕鲸，称其是为了科学研究 。然而，批评人士长期以来一直表示，日本捕鲸的目的不实 。他们辩称，这一活动是商业性的，因为日本出售的鲸肉来自于捕鲸活动 。
在2017到2018年的捕鲸季，日本渔民在南极海域捕杀了333头鲸鱼 。其中有120多头怀孕母鲸 。
捕鲸船只周一从北海道北部的钏路港（Kushiro）出发 。他们将在日本海域捕杀三种鲸鱼：小须鲸、鳁鲸和布莱德鲸 。
凯蒂·布洛克（Kitty Block）是国际人道协会主席 。她对日本的决定感到愤怒，她还表示，日本正在“损害”一种不再受欢迎的产品的国际形象 。
捕鲸在日本是一个非常小的产业 。据政府的数据显示，鲸鱼仅占日本肉类消费量的0.1% 。这一行业的从业人员只有数百人 。
日本水产厅将今年捕杀鲸鱼的数量限制在227头 。日本每年以科学研究的名义捕获多达1200头鲸鱼 。
帕特里克·拉梅奇（Patrick Ramage）是国际动物福利基金的负责人 。他对日本的举动表示欢迎 。他说：“我们看到的是日本捕鲸活动走向结束的开始 。”