Monday, March 11th, was a historic day for sharks in Bangkok, Thailand, at the meeting of the Conference of the Parties to CITES (CITES CoP16). All shark and ray proposals have been adopted in Committee including Oceanic Whitetip, Hammerheads, Porbeagle, Sawfish and Manta Rays. We're working hard with our coalition partners to ensure these decisions are finalized in Plenary by the close of the conference on 14th March. Visit projectaware.org for the final score for the world’s most vulnerable sharks and rays.
Project AWARE sincerely thanks each and every AWARE diver and shark advocate for joining with us in this urgent call to list sharks and rays under CITES. We represented the voice of scuba divers at every opportunity and made our message loud and clear – healthy shark and ray populations are priceless.
In an outpouring of support, more than 135,000 divers from nearly 300 countries around the globe have signed Project AWARE's shark petition urging CITES leaders to vote ‘yes’ for sharks and rays. As international trade is a major driver in the overfishing of sharks, CITES protections are an integral component in their survival, together with strong and enforceable fisheries management.
We are blown away by all the fantastic shark support from the scuba diving community and beyond. Visit www.projectaware.org for an announcement of final results and to find out what’s next in the battle to protect sharks and rays from extinction.