Thursday, May 26, 2011

California Does Right by Sharks

California just passed a bill in its Assembly that bans the possession of shark fins. This means that Chinese restaurants and banquets cannot serve the infamous shark fin soup.

Although it still must pass the Senate, this is great news for sharks and great news for healthy oceans. Much of the media coverage is about the debate around the bill. There is no debate -- killing tens of millions of sharks every year for soup is the poster child for abuse of our natural systems.

Jennifer Cheung, 27, an industrial designer, said it well in the New York Times.

She refused the soup at her family New Year’s dinner, trying — in vain, she said — to explain the importance of the ecosystem to her elderly uncle, a Chinese herbalist.

“It was, ‘Oh, Jennifer’s being a hippie,’ ” she said.

“I come from a culture where food is very important,” she continued. “But I think this is a very hefty price to pay just for a bowl of soup.” 

See local coverage of bill.
See NY Times story here.

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