NEEDS ASSESSMENT AND SHARING STUDY

Aboriginal subsistence quotas are set by the International Whaling Commission (IWC) only upon a demonstration of biological sustainability and subsistence need. A “needs study” for the bowhead whale has not been conducted for over 20-years, therefore the data is outdated and no longer demonstrates subsistence need accurately, as the population has continued to increase.


The AEWC began work in 2015 to conduct research on the sharing and distribution of bowhead whale products by Alaska Eskimo whaling communities. The purpose of this research is to reassess current need for bowhead whales by taking into account the distribution of bowhead whales to other communities and persons, and to determine whether the current IWC quota system allows for adequate harvesting opportunities for Alaska Eskimo whaling communities. The AEWC will utilize the findings of the study during the 2018 IWC meeting to defend the quota renewal. Additionally, the information will be provided on the website once completed.