Do we need to save the whales all over again? What’s the deal with celebrity animals? What does it mean to be a ‘flagship species’ for your ecosystem? This week, Elise explores how the early whaling industry led to the Save the Whales movement of the 1970s, with a few interesting family connections along the way. Then Olivia tells the story of Keiko, better known as the star of Free Willy, and how celebrity can be as toxic for animals as it can be for humans. We also discuss influential documentaries like Blackfish, diversity in high-budget environmental films, and how we’re dealing with our climate (and quarantine) exhaustion.
This is the tweet from climate activist Alexandria Villaseñor that resonated with us at the beginning of the episode.
You can learn more about Alexandria on the Earth Uprising website, an organization she co-founded. She is also involved in the Children vs. Climate Crisis lawsuit. (The lawsuit is international, not Oregon-based. Olivia made that up––sorry :))
Story #1: Save the Whales (Elise)
Calls from the deep: do we need to Save the Whales all over again?, The Guardian, Dec 2020
A Whale of a Solution?, The Solutions Journal, Feb 2016
A brief history of commercial whaling and Greenpeace, Greenpeace, Sept 2018
World Group on Whaling Votes Curb on Hunt for One Species, New York Times, June 1973
Save The Whales
Project Jonah: History
Nye Lubricants: History
The Mariner’s Museum and Park
Story #2: Keiko, Free Willy, and Celebrity Animals (Olivia)
Freeing Willy | Retro Report | The New York Times September 2013
The Death of the World’s Most Famous Whale by Sea Shepherd
Calls from the deep: do we need to Save the Whales all over again? by Sophy Grimshaw for the Guardian, December 31 2020
The Free Willy Story: Keiko’s Journey Home the 1999 TV Movie and its website.
About Orcas from the Center for Whale Research
Why freeing Willy was the wrong thing to do by New Scientist, April 28 2009
How To Save A Planet episode on regenerative farming
Lumenate meditation app
Meditation For Climate Activists
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