Whaling is the hunting of whales mainly for meat and oil. Its earliest forms date to at least 3000 BC. So it has long been a successful economic activity but not too good for the whales whose population tends to be endangered. The Republic of Korea has announced plans to kill endangered whales under a loophole in the International Whaling Commission (IWC) treaty that allows for so-called scientific whaling (A sort of lethal way to determine how best to preserve the remaining whale stock). The Korean proposal was met with fierce opposition from numerous IWC member governments that called the hunt unnecessary given the availability of modern non-lethal research techniques.