Sea Shepherd Germany announces the Baltic Sea Campaign
Saturday, 03 Jun, 2017
This Thursday in Bremen, during the official unveiling of the new patrol ship the M/V Emanuel Bronner, Sea Shepherd Germany announced the launch of its first Baltic Sea Campaign to protect the endangered harbor porpoises this summer.
Anne Kämmerling, Director of Sea Shepherd Germany, and Manuel Abraas, Leader of the Baltic Sea Campaign, presented the new harbor porpoise defense campaign and the donation of the M/V Emanuel Bronner patrol vessel at a press conference with Sea Shepherd Global CEO Alex Cornelisenn, President of Dr. Bronner’s Michael Bronner, and Managing Director of Dr. Bronner’s Europe Axel Rungweber.
The endangered harbour porpoises are considered to be particularly protected under EU law, and the member states are obliged to take measures to ensure this protection in the natural habitats of the harbour porpoises is upheld. Nevertheless, by exemption regulations the use of gillnets is allowed in FFH-areas and nature sanctuaries. Harbour porpoises often end up as bycatch in these nets and drown. Thus, Germany violates the protective laws of the EU!
One of the protective measures to get around this is the use of pingers (so-called acoustic harassment devices), which are used to repel cetaceans away from fishing nets. But these pingers are not used sufficiently enough and pose a massive disturbance for the harbor porpoises and might even chase them out of their habitat.
From July until the end of September, the M/V Emanuel Bronner will be patrolling the waters of the Baltic Sea under the direction of Sea Shepherd Germany, documenting illegal nets and reporting them to the local authorities.
"We thank Dr. Bronner’s for their massive support, the new ship will be a game changer for us on our mission to protect the endangered harbor porpoises!"Anne Kämmerling, Director of Sea Shepherd Germany
Sea Shepherd demands an immediate and complete ban of gillnets in the Baltic Sea. Germany needs to team up with their neighboring countries Denmark and Poland to take more effective protective measures for these endangered cetaceans and finally establish real sanctuaries in the Baltic Sea.
Presented by the German actress and Sea Shepherd Ambassador Anne Menden, over 1000 Sea Shepherd supporters from all over Europe attended the official christening of the new patrol vessel, followed by a Q&A session to learn more about the campaign, free Dr. Bronner's samples, vegan food trucks, and live music from the popular German band Jupiter Jones.