Tomorrow is a big day for sharks! On Friday the 11th of October 2013 Michael Aw will personally deliver a letter to Singapore Airlines asking them to stop the transportation of shark fins, along with what we hope to be 20,000 signatures by the end of today. This initiative hopes to stop the transportation of shark fins to Australia, Hong Kong and Singapore in the effort to drastically reduce and eventually stop the supply.
Congratulations to Emirates, Cathay Pacific, Qantas, Air New Zealand, Korean Airlines, Asiania, Korean Airlines, Lan Chile, Eva Air, AeroMexico, Dragon Air and Fiji Air who have already agreed not to transport shark fins on their airlines, choosing long term environmental sustainability over short term profit. In light of this I urge the 20,000 people who signed the petition to continue supporting sharks by choosing to fly with these insightful and environmentally conscious companies.
Sharks have had a few much needed wins in the past year with a United Nations treaty: the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora, otherwise known as SITES, listing five new shark species to the CITES Appendices. The sharks listed include: Oceanic Whitetips, Porbeagle and three species of Hammerhead sharks including the Scalloped Hammerhead shark. These sharks are all classified as endangered on the IUCN redlist and join Basking, Whale and Great Whites to the list.
Last month Hong Kong also banned shark fins from official functions indicating a welcomed change at the highest level, as China represents approximately 50 percent of the world shark fin market.
The estimated numbers of sharks killed per year has now reached One Hundred Million with the majority being used in shark fin soup. The method of obtaining these fins is equally barbaric and wasteful as the sharks fin is cut off while still alive and the animal thrown back in the water to drown.
The majority of sharks pose no threat to humans although they continue to suffer from a bad reputation imposed by iconic movies such as Jaws and the more recent badly written and directed, un-informed and unethical programs that appear on Shark Week aired by the Discovery channel.
Sharks are the apex predators of our oceans, if we continue to hunt them into extinction we will once again limit the biodiversity of our planet creating irreversible damage to our ecosystem, which will eventually shut down.
After a few short weeks of writting I’m starting to see a theme emerging from my blog: Governmental environmental mismanagement coupled with public ignorance and complacency = Extinction.
I wonder if we will learn our lesson before it’s our turn?
I hope this has inspired readers to sign the petition, say no to shark fining and make informed consumer choices as the fight to save shark populations worldwide continues.
Sign the petition at:https://www.causes.com/singapore-airlines-stop-shipping-shark-fins
I will keep you posted on the outcome.