Skip to main content

See also:

Whales are engineers of the ocean tagged by technology

It has hit Wall Street that whales the mysterious inhabitants of the deep and once known only as Moby Dick holds the key to the future for our planet, according to the Wall Street Journal release today online.

18th Annual Webby Awards - Arrivals
18th Annual Webby Awards - ArrivalsPhoto by Brad Barket/Getty Images

Biologist Joe Roman from the University of Vermont has published with ten researchers the significance of the whales’ contribution to the planet. Roman explains that when whales dive deep and feed they release their fecal plume to the top which supports plankton growth. This is known as the “whale pump.” It is an ingenuous system of leading a chain of events for our planet’s survival.

Everyday activity sometimes blurs that the ocean sends up trace gas from the origins of the ocean and its life forms. Scientists in the 97 percent group who support climate change understand that from the very basic group of organisms, called phytoplankton, trace gases are released into the atmosphere. This atmospheric chemistry changes and the return to the planet earth is affected by the imbalance in the trace gases sent up into the atmosphere.

In other words, we get back what we put out. It is no different with a computer program. We get what we put into the code. The Universe is a system of pay forward and pay back

Roman’s paper published the study in the current journal Frontiers in Ecology and the Environment declared that whales have a huge and positive impact upon the globe’s carbon storage. The study defines the whales as curators of the deep. They help pay forward so the planet can receive the proper balance of carbon storage.

The study by Roman also drew a correlation to the falling numbers of whales due to near extinction for some such as the blue whale due to Japanese hunters. The exploits of the whaling ships have been duly recorded in the news and on television.

“The decline in great whale numbers estimated to be at least 66 percent and perhaps as high as 90 per cent, has likely altered the structure and function of the oceans, but recovery is possible and in many cases is already underway,” according to Roman and his colleagues.

This past March the International Court of Justice in The Hague declared a halt order to the Japanese scientific program since it captured more than 10,000 minke and other whales in the Southern Ocean of the Antarctic. The Japanese hunters were allowed to continue hunting small amounts along its borders with small fishing boats.

The Japanese whaling efforts have been recorded as the reason for the decline in blue whales since the turn of the 19th century and the low numbers estimated at 2,000-20,000 existing at the turn of the 21st century. Japan plans to submit a request to the International Whaling Commission a new plan so Japan may resume some form of whale hunting in 2015.

Without modern technology such as radio tagging it would be impossible for the scientists like Roman and his associates to study the whales upon the ecology. His hope is that this research adds to understanding whales and how the marine biological ecosystem is maintained and fosters positive results for the planet into the future.

Roman’s study is not to be underestimated in its significance and its ability to build future studies of results. It will help the unending debate on climate control and the already scientific opinions on the imbalance of carbon storage and other key components of our planet.