VICTORY!! California Governor Brown Signs Landmark Shark Conservation Bill
Posted October 7, 2011
Today, Governor Brown used the power of his pen to protect sharks and our oceans. We could not be more excited and grateful to the Governor, the sponsors of Assembly Bill 376 -- Assembly Members Paul Fong and Jared Huffman -- and the many other legislators from both parties, whose strong leadership made it possible to ban the sale and trade of shark fins in California.
Sharks have swum in our oceans for over 400 million years – since before the time of dinosaurs – yet globally, but many species are at risk of vanishing due to extreme fishing pressure, driven by demand for shark fins. In his statement, Governor Brown said: “The practice of cutting the fins off of living sharks and dumping them back in the ocean is not only cruel, but it harms the health of our oceans,” said Governor Brown. “Researchers estimate that some shark populations have declined by more than 90 percent, portending grave threats to our environment and commercial fishing. In the interest of future generations, I have signed this bill.”
(Freediver William Winram, Reaching out to Tiger Shark; Photo by Fred Buyle)
Governor Brown’s decisive action will end California’s contribution to the fin trade that drives the killing of between 26 –73 million sharks each year just for their fins. The Governor heard the voices of many thousands of Californians– including Asian Pacific American community leaders, scientists, fishermen, and celebrities – who agree that we must do more to protect sharks, before it’s too late. This bill was supported by a fantastic coalition of organizations and experts including the Monterey Bay Aquarium, Wild Aid, the Humane Society of the U.S., NRDC Honorary Trustee Sylvia Earle, Jean-Michel Cousteau, and dozens more.
Our most sincere thanks to all the NRDC members and activists who took action to save sharks – we could not have done it without you.
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