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Every year, up to 73 million sharks are slaughtered for their fins, meat, cartilage, liver and skin. And 30% of shark species are threatened or near threatened with extinction.
In the Bahamas, sharks bring in ecotourism and are treasured members of the ecosystem. Yet even in this tropical paradise that took the strong step to ban longline gear 15 years ago, more could be done.
Two Bahamians, dive master Cristina Zenato and conservationist Pedro Baranda, have joined forces with local Bahamian and international environmental groups including The Bahamas Humane Society, The Bahamas National Trust, EARTHCARE, Friends of the Environment, The Nature Conservancy, Bahamas Reef Environment Educational Foundation (BREEF), reEarth and the Pew Environment Group to support shark conservation in the Bahamas.
Tell Bahamian authorities to put in place permanent protection for the sharks of the Bahamas before it's too late.
Dear Bahamas Prime Minister, Minister of Tourism and Minister of Agriculture and Marine Resources;
I am writing to ask you to ban the import, commerce, and exchange of shark meat and derived shark products such as cartilage, teeth and fins in the Bahamas. Furthermore, I am asking you to ban the fishing, capture, and slaughter of sharks in all of the Bahamian waters.
The Bahamas have a reputation as shark diving capital of the world. The income generated by sharks that are alive supports an industry that spreads beyond the local dive stores to include airline companies, hotels, souvenir stores, restaurants and every part of the Bahamian economy that depends on travelling shark divers. Yet even in this tropical paradise that took the strong step to ban longline gear 15 years ago, more could be done.
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