Position Statements 

The below statements have been formally adopted by Beluga Whale Alliance (BWA)’s Board of Directors.

We respect the complexity of viewpoints surrounding the following issues & topics. All about recognizing this complexity and maintaining a sustainable balance.

To become leaders in and effectively support beluga conservation, it is vital that Beluga Whale Alliance (BWA) thoroughly examines and addresses any issues that affect belugas.

We understand some may take issue with our stances. That’s OK. Complex, ethical issues. After careful consideration, we feel by adopting the below stances that embrace this complexity and a holistic, long-term view of beluga conservation will most effectively help us achieve our mission.

Questions or Comments?

We are committed to transparency & cultivating constructive dialogue. If you have questions about our positions on the above topics & issues, or would like to engage in respectful conversation with us on one or more of the above topics, please contact us at policy@belugawhalealliance.org.


Aquaria & Human Care

While our focus is on in-situ conservation of belugas and their wild habitats.
Unfortunately, not all. A spectrum. And legitimate concern over.
Recognize a complex issue.

Discount valuable partnerships

We recognize and value the role many zoos and aquaria play in modern wildlife & beluga conservation.

Also respect individuals’ opinions and beliefs.

Important to work constructively with accredited facilities committed to improving the quality of life of belugas in their care and increase their conservation capacity, to advance beluga conservation of the species as a whole.


Accredited Association of Zoos and Aquariums (AZA) facilities in the U.S. have shown a demonstrated effort and advancement in recent years (TK) to improving the quality of life of the animals in their care. Operate under increasingly improved upon standards. We recognize a spectrum of facilities across the world, and many, unfortunately, lacking even basic standards or regulatory mechanisms. We are committed to advocating for the improved care of belugas. Recognize this is a ongoing process of improvement. Work with partners to appropriately assist belugas in need. Passion of those who work with animals, genuine love.

raising awareness

Recognize the unique and valuable role aquaria play in connecting people to Arctic-dwelling species. “AZA-accredited zoos connect people with elephants and help raise awareness about the conservation issues these incredible creatures face in their natural ranges.” Outreach and education.

contributions to research & KNOWLEDGE



We recognize the benefit of


We oppose the practice of capturing belugas from the wild for any purpose other than rescue and rehabilitation.

Conservation Policy

We promote policies and programs that address threats to belugas and support beluga health & survival. We oppose policies and projects that harm, or have a high likelihood of harming, beluga health and habitat. We examine policies, programs, and projects pertinent to beluga health & survival using the following approach:

Rooted in Science

We support policies that are grounded in facts and utilize the best available science in their implementation.


We examine all policy issues from a nonpartisan standpoint, leaving out party affiliation.

Beluga-Friendly & Balanced

We examine all policy issues with the best interests of belugas in mind, as well as a commitment to sustainably balancing the needs of belugas and people.

Subsistence Harvest

The subsistence harvest of beluga whales is still an integral traditional activity in several … northern and western Alaska Native villages. Four out of the five Alaskan stocks of beluga whales are harvested during the summer months and provide an important resource for these communities.

As threats to belugas increase, we hope to work with indigenous communities around the world in community-based conservation efforts to find more effective solutions to beluga conservation.

sociocultural importance

Beluga Whale Alliance recognizes the sociocultural importance of this practice to traditional ways of life for indigenous peoples of the Arctic.

sustainable co-management

Government wildlife agencies work cooperatively with Alaska Native organizations and subsistence hunters in Alaska, Canada, and other regions of the world co-manage a majority of beluga populations. The goal of all parties involved is for the conservation and sustainable management of beluga whales. In areas of the world where hunting is not effectively regulated… it is our hope to work with stakeholders in regions of the world…

We believe the same respect for animals that is promoted by as a primary value of modern conservation is also inherent in sustainable methods of living off the land or sea.

contributions to research