Greenpeace Canada

Greenpeace Canada

January 17, 2006 13:32 ET

Greenpeace makes global appeal: Become an Ocean Defender

Greenpeace makes global appeal: Save the Whales Become an Ocean Defender Attention: Assignment Editor, Environment Editor, News Editor, Photo Editor, World News Editor TORONTO/ONTARIO--(CCNMatthews - Jan. 17, 2006) - "A photo for this release will be available on the CP picture wire via CCNMatthews"

Greenpeace activists in Toronto and Niagara Falls joined activists all over the world to launch an appeal for people to become Ocean Defenders and help preserve the health and wealth of our oceans. Whale tails were erected in front of Toronto City Hall and then Niagara Falls to call on Canadians to become Ocean Defenders.

From the frigid waters of the Southern Ocean Whale Sanctuary to the streets of Toronto, Amsterdam, Calcutta, Tokyo, Auckland, people are being asked to sign up as Ocean Defenders. They can join Greenpeace in cyberspace where they can download activist kits, take part in cyberactions and communicate along with millions of people directly to politicians, companies and fellow consumers to turn the tide on ocean destruction.

"The stupidity of the whale hunt in the Southern Ocean Whale Sanctuary is only the tip of the iceberg when it comes to the devastation and destruction being wreaked upon our oceans world wide. The oceans provide half of the world's oxygen, which is every second breath we take. In return we are emptying them of life, trawling them with giant nets which scour and devour everything in their path, heat them with global warming and pour our waste into them. Unless we want our children to inherit oceans devoid of life and beauty, we must all act to save them now," said Shane Rattenbury leader of the expedition in the Southern Ocean Whale Sanctuary.

Two Greenpeace ships, the MY Esperanza and the MY Arctic Sunrise, left Cape Town on November 20 in order to defend the whales in the Sanctuary. Since December 21 the ships have been pursuing the whaling fleet and continually disrupting the whaling by placing inflatables between the harpoons and whales.

"While international public opinion on whaling is ignored and high level diplomatic pressure is failing, Greenpeace continues to draw attention to the ongoing whale hunt," said Bruce Cox, Greenpeace Canada Executive Director. "We call on Canadians across the country to join us in defending our oceans and in forcing action on saving the whales. As this campaign work continues the support of Canadians in defending our oceans will help bring about the change needed to ensure that our ocean ecosystems are around for future generations."

The campaign to defend the whales in the Southern Ocean Whale Sanctuary is the first stage in an ambitious new Greenpeace campaign 'Defending our Oceans'. Over the next year the Esperanza will be Greenpeace's main platform in arguing for a network of marine reserves or parks covering 40% of the world's oceans: places that will be protected from industrial exploitation and destruction, from industrial fishing and hunting, and places from which our oceans can begin the process of repair and recovery

For more information on the campaign to defend the whales go to:

Contact information:

Bruce Cox, Greenpeace Canada Executive Director, cell: 416-419-7341
Andrew Male, Greenpeace Canada Communications Coordinator, cell: 416-880-2757
Shane Rattenbury, Greenpeace Southern Ocean Expedition Leader, on board the Arctic Sunrise, + 873324453810

For video and stills of Greenpeace's action in the Southern Ocean contact Andrew Male or:
Greenpeace International Video Desk +31653504721
Greenpeace International Photo Desk +31653819121 or +31653819255

Contact Information