Pacific Whale Foundation was born in 1980 out of the "Save the Whales" movement. We hold a unique position among environmental groups as both an advocacy and a research organization. Our data, collected over more than three decades of field research, is instrumental in supporting scientifically based approaches to whale conservation and management.

We have conducted field studies of Southern Pacific humpback whales for over 35 years, and collected the largest fluke identification data set of humpback whales in this region. The data includes regions where Japan’s whaling fleet currently conducts lethal “scientific” whaling expeditions, and where it would continue to hunt whales under the IWC proposal. This data contribute to a compelling case against whaling in this important whale habitat.

Pacific Whale Foundation researchers are part of the Southern Ocean Research Partnership (SORP), an alliance (spearheaded by Australia) between researchers committed to using modern, non-lethal, scientific methods to study cetaceans in the Southern Ocean and provide data to the IWC to help protect whales.

Pacific Whale Foundation researchers participated in the IWC's Workshop on the Comprehensive Assessment of Southern Hemisphere humpback whales in 2006 and in the IWC's 2009, 2010 and 2011 Scientific Committee meetings. Pacific Whale Foundation Ecuador Project Director Cristina Castro was part of Ecuador's delegation to the 2010 IWC Annual Meeting. Pacific Whale Foundation President Greg Kaufman will be attending the IWC Scientific Committee Meeting in June in Panama; Pacific Whale Foundation's Ecuador Project Director Cristina Castro will once again be part of Ecuador's delegation to the 2012 IWC Annual Meeting. Please follow Pacific Whale Foundation's posts on Facebook to learn more.

Pacific Whale Foundation’s Greg Kaufman was invited by the U.S. Department of State (Bureau of International Organization Affairs) to represent the United States and its whalewatching industry at an  International Whaling Commission (IWC) Workshop on whalewatching from November 3 through 5, 2010 in Puerto Madryn, Argentina. Kaufman was one of just two delegates representing the United States.  The aim of the workshop was to design a five-year strategic plan on whalewatching in order to provide support to the many countries looking to realize its benefits. Kaufman believes that by encouraging whalewatching, we can find the way to end commercial whaling forever, Eventually, whaling nations will realize there is much greater value in living whales than slaughtered whales.

In May, 2011, Pacific Whale Foundation joined Whales Need US, a coalition of non-government organizations working to end commercial whaling.

In June, 2011, Pacific Whale Foundation President and Founder Greg Kaufman attended the IWC Scientific Committee Meeting in Norway and presented seven research papers.

In May and June 2011, Pacific Whale Foundation President and Founder Greg Kaufman attended the Annual Meeting of the International Whaling Commission (IWC) Scientific Committee from May 29 through June 11 in Tromso, Norway. Kaufman is an Invited Participant Member in the IWC Scientific Committee and presented seven research papers from Pacific Whale Foundation to the group of approximately 200 scientists and marine biologists from around the world. The Scientific Committee has an important role in evaluating scientific data about whales and issuing recommendations regarding commercial whaling and other whale management issues to the IWC.

During October, 2011, the United Nations Environment Programme-Caribbean Environment Programme (UNEP-CEP) invited Pacific Whale Foundation President Gregory D. Kaufman and Education Manager Merrill Kaufman to join a group of eminent researchers and whalewatch experts as presenters at the upcoming “Workshop on Marine Mammal Watching in the Wider Caribbean Region,” held in Panama City, Panama.

In Spring, 2012, Pacific Whale Foundation President and Founder Greg Kaufman traveled to Patagonia, Chile, to participate in a symposium and two accompanying invitation-only, closed door workshops on the latest in benign whale research techniques. The event was sponsored by the International Whaling Commission and the governments of Australia, the United States and Chile, Oregon State University, Internatinal Fund for Animal Welfare, Centro De Conservacion Cetacea, and hosted by the Southern Ocean Research Partnership (SORP). The Southern Ocean Research Partnership (SORP) is an integrated, collaborative, research consortium that aims to maximize conservation outcomes of Southern Ocean whales through non-lethal research on the status, health, dynamics and environmental linkages of their whale populations and the threats they face.