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Goal: 30,000 Progress: 26,697
Sponsored by: Oceana

Fins from up to 73 million sharks end up in the global fin trade every year.

Shark finning is a wasteful and inhumane practice in which a shark’s fins are cut off and the body is discarded at sea to drown. While shark finning is illegal in American waters, fins are still bought and sold in the United States.

Add your name now and tell Congress to prohibit the sale and trade of all shark fin products in the U.S.

A nationwide ban on the trade of shark fins is the best way to ensure that the U.S. is not supporting shark finning and protect sharks around the world.

Sign Here

Dear Members of Congress:

I am writing to urge you to support the Shark Fin Trade Elimination Act of 2016, which would prohibit the sale and trade of shark fins in the United States. Sharks have been on our planet for over 420 million years — 200 million years before dinosaurs walked the Earth. Although sharks have survived major mass extinction events, human activities including overfishing, bycatch and the demand for shark fins now pose the greatest threat to their survival.

In fact, every year, fins from up to 73 million sharks enter the global shark fin trade. Many of these sharks have been finned. Shark finning involves cutting the fins off the body of the shark and saving them for sale, while dumping the body of the shark back into the sea to drown, bleed to death or be eaten alive. This cruel, wasteful practice puts many shark species at risk of extinction.

Although the practice of shark finning is illegal in U.S. waters, the United States still participates in the shark fin trade. Shark fins continue to be imported into the United States either from countries that do not have similar shark finning restrictions, from sharks finned on the high seas, or from illegal shark finning in U.S. waters. Since 2010, the United States has imported fins from 11 countries, five of which do not have any type of finning ban.

Many of the sharks targeted for their fins have long lifespans, mature slowly, and produce relatively few young, making them especially vulnerable to overexploitation and population loss. In fact, more than 70 percent of the most common species in the fin trade are at a high or very high risk of extinction. Due to the difficulty in identifying shark species based on detached and processed fins, it is easy for threatened species to end up in the shark fin market.

What is equally troubling is that the trade data reported to the FAO does not match NOAA's own fin data. For example, between 2000 and 2011, NOAA reported that, on average, the United States imported 75,000 pounds of fins every year, yet the total number reported as having been exported to the U.S. by the exporting countries was a staggering 580,000 pounds — more than seven times NOAA's amount!

The Shark Fin Trade Elimination Act, introduced by Senator Booker (D-NJ), Senator Capito (R-WV), Representative Sablan (D-MP) and Representative Royce (R-CA) would create a nationwide prohibition on the trade of shark fins, therefore reinforcing the status of the United States as a leader in shark conservation.

Eleven states and three territories already have passed bills to ban the trade of shark fins — Hawaii, Oregon, Washington, California, Illinois, Maryland, Delaware, New York, Massachusetts, Texas, Rhode Island, Guam, the North Mariana Islands and American Samoa. A number of leading companies have also banned the selling and shipment of shark fin products, including GrubHub, Amazon, Disney, UPS, American Airlines and Hilton Worldwide. Please join them by supporting the Shark Fin Trade Elimination Act.


Petition Signatures

Jun 24, 2017 Yukari Rozenoff
Jun 23, 2017 Carmen Thibodeaux
Jun 22, 2017 Maria Timony
Jun 22, 2017 Roberta Nava
Jun 22, 2017 Dana Sklar
Jun 22, 2017 Bożena Staniszewska
Jun 22, 2017 Maria Prinsloo
Jun 22, 2017 Beverly Brown
Jun 22, 2017 Mary Ware
Jun 21, 2017 Cheryl Teo
Jun 20, 2017 Stacy Wykle
Jun 20, 2017 (Name not displayed)
Jun 19, 2017 sarah stevens
Jun 18, 2017 M Rex-Lear
Jun 18, 2017 Stacey Storek
Jun 17, 2017 (Name not displayed)
Jun 17, 2017 Jeanne Wurst
Jun 15, 2017 Ileana Lopez
Jun 14, 2017 Manuela Nestler
Jun 13, 2017 tammy bullock
Jun 13, 2017 Mayra Galutza
Jun 12, 2017 Kim Keller
Jun 10, 2017 Ellen Prior
Jun 9, 2017 Amanda Batiz
Jun 9, 2017 Stephanie Brake
Jun 9, 2017 Beth Smith
Jun 9, 2017 Rita K Curtis
Jun 9, 2017 Christy Kyriss
Jun 8, 2017 R Singh
Jun 8, 2017 mona boggio wasteful and inhumane
Jun 6, 2017 (Name not displayed)
Jun 6, 2017 Maiko Kushida
Jun 6, 2017 Leonie Brown
Jun 5, 2017 Julia Amsler
Jun 5, 2017 Mary Johnson
Jun 5, 2017 Gayle Hann
Jun 5, 2017 Samantha Manso
Jun 5, 2017 Jim Faulks
Jun 5, 2017 Jack Martin
Jun 5, 2017 mim bois
Jun 4, 2017 Fran Lowell
Jun 4, 2017 Maggie Alk
Jun 4, 2017 Nicolette Cuoco
Jun 4, 2017 Angela Lees
Jun 4, 2017 Yolanda Hershey
Jun 4, 2017 Suzanne Shephard
Jun 3, 2017 Shelby Buck
Jun 3, 2017 Frédéric Jaubert
Jun 3, 2017 Anne Griffin
Jun 3, 2017 Ann Ireland Is cruelty going to be the legacy of this current breed of humanity? Please support our congress members who are trying to prohibit the trade of shark fins. We can stop this but only if we all participate. We are stronger than we realize.

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