Today, Governor Jerry Brown signed AB 376 into law -- legislation that will ban the import, possession, and sale of shark fins in the state of California. Since California is one of the largest markets for shark fins outside of Asia, this act is a significant step toward increasing global protection of sharks and sustaining the health of our oceans.
WildAid commends the leadership of Governor Brown, Assembly Members Paul Fong and Jared Huffman, the Monterey Bay Aquarium and our coalition of peer organizations, and the 150,000 Californians who voiced their support of AB376 via phone calls, petitions, e-mails, and pledges.
Though we have much reason to celebrate today, the global fight for shark conservation wages on. The burgeoning economies of Asia have led to a drastic increase in demand for shark fin soup, which had historically been reserved for a small segment of the population who could afford it. In China, WildAid has been at the forefront of a shark campaign for over a decade. At a recent WildAid event in Shanghai, our ambassador Yao Ming called for a shark fin ban in China, accompanied by British entrepreneur Sir Richard Branson and Chinese entrepreneur Zhang Yue, who both called upon the business community to support shark conservation.
The momentum on both sides of the world is strong. With your support, we will continue our fight for shark protection on a global scale.