Environmental Outlook: Controversy Over Dolphin Hunting In Japan

Environmental Outlook: Controversy Over Dolphin Hunting In Japan

U.S. Ambassador Caroline Kennedy recently made news when she called dolphin hunting in Japan “inhumane.” The Japanese government says it’s part of the nation’s tradition. For this month's Environmental Outlook: controversy over killing dolphins in Japan.

Dolphin hunting is legal in many parts of the world, including the Solomon Islands, parts of Denmark and Peru. But the largest dolphin hunt in the world takes place in Taiji, Japan. Every year, more than 700 wild dolphins are killed by fishermen, their bodies sold as meat to stores in Japan. Hundreds more dolphins are captured and sold to aquariums around the world. In a recent tweet, U.S. Ambassador Caroline Kennedy called the Taiji dolphin hunt "inhumane." The Japanese government says it’s an integral part of their tradition and culture. For this month’s Environmental Outlook, Diane and guests discuss the controversy over dolphin hunting in Japan.


Diana Reiss, Ph.D.

marine mammal scientist and professor of cognitive psychology, Hunter College and dolphin researcher, National Aquarium in Baltimore, Md.

Richard O'Barry

activist, former dolphin trainer and founder of The Dolphin Project, a campaign under the International Marine Mammal Project at the non-profit Earth Island Institute.

Kyle Cleveland, Ph.D.

associate director of the Institute for Contemporary Asian Studies, Temple University’s campus in Tokyo, Japan.

Contact U.S. Embassy Officials About Japan's Dolphin Hunt

Send email to the U.S. Embassy Japan.

Send mail to the U.S. State Department:
U.S. Department of State
Attn: Senator John Kerry
2201 C Street NW
Washington, D.C. 20520

Scenes From Taiji Dolphin Hunt

Warning: Video contains graphic content

"The Cove" Film Trailer

Please familiarize yourself with our Code of Conduct and Terms of Use before posting your comments.

Our address has changed!

The Diane Rehm Show is produced by member-supported WAMU 88.5 in Washington DC.