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Showing posts with the label Oceans

Six Solutions to Save Sharks

Sharks are in deep trouble. Driven mainly by overfishing, their numbers are plummeting, and an alarming number of species are facing extinction. These diverse and necessary species have been evolving for some 400 million years, but now time is not on their side. This Shark Awareness Day, I’m highlighting the top six things I believe need to happen if the downward trajectories of so many shark populations are to be reversed. These are not in any order of priority — each is essential.TraceabilityA wide variety of shark products are traded internationally, with a value approaching US$1 billion. But the international trade is awash with shark products of unknown origin and species, some of which were illegally caught and exported. Indeed, the proportion of illegal products has probably increased as more species have been added to the list of species regulated by CITES, and there have been some massive shark fin seizures here in Hong Kong recently. The vast majority of shark products are n…

Justice For the Ocean

A ship runs aground and breaks in two on the shores of a protected area — coating Mauritian beaches, coral reefs and mangroves in a poisonous sludge and putting fisheries and wildlife at risk of toxic contamination. On the other side of world, a fleet of fishing vessels indiscriminately hoover up marine life, including endangered whale sharks, in the Galapagos National Park.The past couple of weeks have brought into sharp relief some of the threats to our ocean, its creatures, and the communities and economies dependent upon its health. Many articles have been written, tweets liked and videos shared. (My 14-year old niece in Mauritius and her friends are prepared to donate their hair to the clean-up efforts.) We are sad and outraged.What can we take from these seemingly disconnected events? Apart from the obvious — that the behaviour of the captains, crews, and companies behind these vessels is damaging ocean health and economies — there are lessons here about what needs to be done to…