The North Atlantic right whale was once considered near-extinct, but now, the species is said to be rebounding at an average rate of two percent per year in the Bay of Fundy, following a decision to re-direct Irving Oil's shipping lanes ten years ago.
The current population now sits at a healthy 450 -- up substantially from the 350 whales that were inhabiting the area prior to the initiative.
Vessel strikes were once listed as a leading cause of death for the whales -- and that prompted Irving Oil and the New England Aquarium to make the joint decision to move the oil company's shipping lanes away from the whales' feeding grounds.
By all accounts, the initiative appears to be working: According to Irving Oil, there have been no documented collisions with whales in the area since 2003.
"Our world is changing so rapidly and ... we need to carefully balance the impact we have on our environment, particularly species which are endangered,” said John Logan, Manager of Project Management and Controls for Irving Oil, in a press release. “That’s why a model such as this, where all parties are at the table working toward sustainable solutions, works so well."