Conservation groups are celebrating today’s European Parliament vote to close loopholes in the European Union ban on shark finning (slicing off a shark’s fins and discarding the body at sea), the culmination of six years of campaigning and debate.
Members of the European Parliament voted overwhelmingly in favor of the European Commission’s proposal to impose the best practice for finning ban enforcement: a prohibition on removing shark fins at sea. The measure faced formidable opposition from representatives of Spain and Portugal, Europe’s leaders in catch of oceanic sharks.
On Monday 21st November 2011, Project AWARE together with other Shark Alliance member groups enthusiastically welcomed the long-awaited proposal from the European Commission to close the loopholes in the European Union’s ban on shark finning, the wasteful practice of slicing off a shark’s fins and discarding the body at sea.
The proposal if adopted by the European Parliament and Council of Ministers would ensure that all sharks taken by EU vessels or in EU waters are landed with their fins still naturally attached to their bodies.