Sea Shepherd - Operation RelentlesS

Following on from their most successful Antarctic Whale Defence Campaign - 'Operation Zero Tolerance' - Sea Shepherd's 10th campaign to defend the whales of the Southern Ocean Whale Sanctuary was named 'Operation Relentless'. For this operation Sea Shepherd sent  three vessels - the 'Steve Irwin', the 'Bob Barker' & the 'Sam Simon' - to confront the Japanese Whaling Fleet.

Fair Projects joined Sea Shepherd for the second Austral summer in a row, sailing aboard their flagship, the 'Steve Irwin', in order to run their internal media productions department. Over four months, Fair Projects produced 14 videos that kept Sea Shepherd supporters up to date with the latest news from the campaign, as well as working with on-shore media to ensure that they received media assets as soon as possible so that they could report on the action.

 
The promotional video for the campaign, which was used throughout 2013.
 
Three Minke Whales lie on the deck of the Nisshin Maru.
The remains of a recently killed Minke Whale.

On the 27th of January, 2014, the helicopter of the Steve Irwin located the Japanese Whaling Fleet in the Ross Sea. Withing minuted of finding the fleet it was revealed that the fleet had been whaling, as 3 Minke Whales lay dead on the deck of the Nisshin Maru, whilst another whale was in the final stages of being cut up for freezing. Fair Projects photographed the process, & the images were later used by news sources worldwide as public pressure mounted on the Japanese Government to end their hunt.

 
 

Later in the campaign, the whaling fleet decided to turn the tables on Sea Shepherd and become the aggressors. On the 2nd of February, 2014, the three harpoon vessels dragged long steel cables in front of the Steve Irwin & Bob Barker, who were tailing the Nisshin Maru, and thus preventing it from processing whales. Over the course of 9 hours, the harpoon vessels managed to create enough distance between the Sea Shepherd vessels & the Nisshin Maru, allowing it to escape.

Fair Projects worked with Sea Shepherd to document & distribute media of the attack, in order to shine a spotlight on the dangerous strategies of the whaling fleet, which again assisted in mounting global pressure on the Japanese Government.

 
Captain Sid Chakravarty announces the end of Operation Relentless to the crew of the Steve Irwin.
 

On the 3rd of March, 2014, the whaling fleet turned North & headed back to Japan, with a total of 251 whales aboard their ship - 784 short of their self-allocated quota. After two and a half months at sea, the Sea Shepherd ships set course for Melbourne, bringing an end to their 10th Antarctic Whale Defence Campaign.

 
 

By the end of March, The International Court of Justice ruled Japan's Antarctic scientific whaling illegal, meaning that the summer of 2014-2015 would be the first time the whales of Antarctic would swim free in decades.


To see all of Fair Project's video work for Operation Relentless, click here.

To find out more about Operation Relentless, click here