Commercial whaling is the cause of the rapid disappearance of great whales in the South Pacific Ocean. When Bárbara Galletti realised this, she knew she had to take action, even though she wasn’t a trained nature conservationist (she has a background in hydraulic engineering). In 2001, she co-founded the Cetacean Conservation Centre, with the conservation and long-term recovery of populations of these species as their goal. They combine scientific research, coastal community development and the promotion of marine conservation measures. Bárbara’s knowledge and enthusiasm have proven to be vital in positioning Chile as a whale conservation leader at the International Whaling Commission.
With a background as a hydraulic engineer, Bárbara Galletti did not expect that she would follow the path that in the end would lead to the conservation of whales. This changed when Bárbara saw all the threats marine mammals were facing because of human actions. Bárbara’s knowledge and enthusiasm have been vital in positioning Chile as a whale conservation leader at the International Whaling Commission.
Vision and Approach
Commercial whaling is the cause of the rapid disappearing of great wales in the South Pacific. When Bárbara got acquainted with marine conservation projects, she realised what threats the declining whale populations were facing and was driven to take action. By raising awareness and support and effectively combining that with coastal community development and scientific research, she built an enormous body of support for the conservation of whales. In 2001, she co-founded the Cetacean Conservation Centre, with the conservation and long-term recovery of populations of these species as their goal.
“The Future For Nature Award means we got recognition for the work we have been doing – voluntarily most of the time – for over ten years. It gives us hope for increasing support at all levels: the people, the funders, and the politicians. Everybody needs to get involved. It is a human responsibility: we drove the planet to this point, and now we have to reverse the situation.”Bárbara Galletti
Impact of the Future For Nature Award
- The Future For Nature Award is an important recognition of CCC’s achievements throughout the years, such as the Chilean whale sanctuary and the work conducted under the Alfaguara (blue whale) and southern right whale projects.
- The prize money is invested in conservation projects, particularly in two species; the blue whales and the southern right whales. Also, more conservation measures will be and awareness will be created.
"Ms Galletti is an outstanding conservationist whose hard-work, passion, and focus have resulted in excellent long-term data on the status of Southern Right and Blue Whales. She is systematic, effective, and clear thinking with an ability to motivate and inspire action at both national and international levels. This award will help to cement her position and provide critical funds to fortify her laudable conservation efforts."Ms. Saba Douglas-Hamilton, International Selection Committee