European Shark Week
Every October, members of the Shark Alliance in Europe run a week of activities for supporters and other shark enthusiasts to find out more about sharks and shark conservation and add their voices to those demanding that policy makers secure the future health of shark populations.
In 2010, they held events in 13 EU countries and generated over 34,0000 postcards and petition signatures from member groups, aquariums, dive centers and schools which, with thousands more e-mails and letters, were sent to Members of the European Parliament, a majority of who then signed the Written Declaration calling for a strengthened EU ban on shark “finning” requiring all sharks to be landed with their ‘fins naturally attached’.
In 2011, they focussed on national fisheries ministers in EU member states and unfulfilled commitments of the Community Plan of Action for Sharks (the CPOA), in particular for a strengthened finning regulation.
After sustained pressure from the Shark Alliance, three years ago EU Fisheries Ministers endorsed a sound plan of action for shark conservation but there was unfinished business: The EU finning ban still has huge loopholes, many endangered shark species remain completely unprotected, and there are no limits on the main shark species targeted by EU boats. There are key opportunities in the coming months to deliver on the commitments of the CPOA.
Shark Alliance member groups, aquariums and other supporters were asked to help gather signatures for national petitions, to hold events and collect drawings and photographs used to call on Fisheries Ministers to protect sharks from finning and overfishing and finish what was promised in 2009.
If you want to find out more, or better, offer your support please contact Irene Kingma: [email protected].
Urge Ministers to ensure fulfilment of the commitments of the EU Shark Action Plan, especially strengthening the ban on shark finning – the wasteful practice of slicing off a shark’s fins and discarding the body at sea.
ESW petition information
The EU has unFINished business for sharks
Invite and information for European Shark Week 2011