Posted by: reefrescue | March 18, 2010

Shark conservation proposal defeated at UN meeting

MICHAEL CASEY, AP Environmental Writer Michael Casey, Ap Environmental Writer – Tue Mar 16, 2:54 pm ET

DOHA, Qatar – China, Japan and Russia helped defeat a U.S.-endorsed proposal at a U.N. wildlife trade meeting Tuesday that would have boosted conservation efforts for sharks, expressing concern it would hurt poor nations and should be the responsibility of regional fisheries bodies.

The opposition to the shark proposal came hours after the marine conservation group Oceana came out with a report showing that demand for shark fin soup in Asia is driving many species of these big fish to the brink of extinction.

The nonbinding measure, which called for increased transparency in the shark trade and more research into the threat posed to sharks by illegal fishing, had been expected to gain approval by a committee of the 175-nation Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species, or CITES.

But the United States, the European Union and other supporters were unable to muster the two-thirds majority needed after China, Russia, Japan and several developing countries argued that shark populations aren’t suffering. (learn more)

Read Say No to Sharkfin Soup

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