Free Newsletters - Space - Defense - Environment - Energy - Solar - Nuclear
..
. 24/7 Space News .




WATER WORLD
Outrage over Hong Kong's 'shark fin rooftop'
by Staff Writers
Hong Kong (AFP) Jan 3, 2013


Hong Kong conservationists expressed outrage Thursday after images emerged of a factory rooftop covered in thousands of freshly sliced shark fins, as they called for curbs on the "barbaric" trade.

The southern Chinese city is one of the world's biggest markets for shark fins, which are used to make soup that is an expensive staple at Chinese banquets and viewed by many Asians as a rare delicacy.

Activist Gary Stokes who has visited the site estimated there are 15,000 to 20,000 fins being laid to dry on the rooftop on Hong Kong island ahead of an anticipated surge in demand over Lunar New Year in February this year.

"This is shocking," the Hong Kong coordinator for conservation group Sea Shepherd told AFP, saying it was the first time that he has spotted such a massive hoarding of shark fins in one place in the Asian financial hub.

"This is the most graphic, brutal and barbaric part of the industry -- the element of chopping a shark's fin off and throwing it back into the water is horrific and inhumane," he added.

Stokes believed the large amount of shark fins were destined for China, and that traders moved to dry the shark fins on secluded rooftops instead of sidewalks -- as they have done in the past -- to avoid public anger.

Campaigns against consuming shark fins have gained ground in Hong Kong in recent years, after major hotel chains decided to drop the soup from the menus, and home carrier Cathay Pacific said in September it would stop carrying unsustainable sourced shark products on its cargo flights.

"The demand in Hong Kong is definitely decreasing but unfortunately, the demand in China is growing," Stokes said.

"As long as there is no protection for the sharks, the (demand) will just keep going on and on," he added, urging Hong Kong authorities to ban the trade.

Environmentalists say the sustainable shark fin industry is tiny and most of the products are harvested in a way that threatens scores of shark species deemed vital for healthy oceans.

About 73 million sharks are killed every year, with Hong Kong importing about 10,000 tonnes annually for the past decade, according to environmental group WWF. Most of those fins are then exported to mainland China.

The number of threatened shark species has soared from 15 in 1996 to more than 180 in 2010, mainly due to the growing Chinese demand for fins.

It was not immediately clear who owns the thousands of unprocessed fins on the rooftop, which was unguarded when visited by an AFP journalist Thursday.

A spokeswoman from the government's conservation department told AFP that authorities could not act because the fins were on private property.

"This is a real disaster and it is just a tip of the iceberg," Silvy Pun, the Hong Kong director for US-based Shark Savers said.

She criticised the Hong Kong government for not acting to protect the dwindling shark population, after neighbouring Taiwan banned shark finning this year while China plans to stop serving the soup at official banquets.

"Hong Kong is a major shark fin capital, the government must do something. The government is being very laid-back and trying to avoid confrontation with the shark fin traders," Pun said.

Trade in shark fins is not regulated in Hong Kong except for three species -- basking shark, great white shark and whale shark -- where the trade is restricted under the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora (CITES), to which Hong Kong is a signatory.

A kilogram (two pounds) of premium dried fin can fetch up to HK$10,000 ($1,290) in Hong Kong, while a bowl of the soup sells for over HK$1,000.

.


Related Links
Water News - Science, Technology and Politics






Comment on this article via your Facebook, Yahoo, AOL, Hotmail login.

Share this article via these popular social media networks
del.icio.usdel.icio.us DiggDigg RedditReddit GoogleGoogle




Memory Foam Mattress Review
Newsletters :: SpaceDaily :: SpaceWar :: TerraDaily :: Energy Daily
XML Feeds :: Space News :: Earth News :: War News :: Solar Energy News





WATER WORLD
China's boom savages coral reefs: study
Sydney (AFP) Dec 27, 2012
China's economic boom has seen its coral reefs shrink by at least 80 percent over the past 30 years, a joint Australian study found Thursday, with researchers describing "grim" levels of damage and loss. Scientists from the Australian Research Council Centre of Excellence for Coral Reef Studies and the South China Sea Institute of Oceanology said their survey of mainland China and South Chin ... read more


WATER WORLD
Russia designs manned lunar spacecraft

GRAIL Lunar Impact Site Named for Astronaut Sally Ride

NASA probes crash into the moon

No plans of sending an Indian on moon

WATER WORLD
Stanford researchers develop acrobatic space rovers to explore moons and asteroids

Researchers Identify Water Rich Meteorite Linked To Mars Crust

Mars meteorite has significant water

'Spiky' rovers could explore martian moon

WATER WORLD
Congress Approves Bill Supporting Human Space Exploration

China's Chengdu aiming to be world's next Silicon Valley

Satellite highs, suspension lows for Indian space sector in 2012

NASA's Destination Station Exhibit Opens In Mesa, Arizona

WATER WORLD
Mr Xi in Space

China plans manned space launch in 2013: state media

China to launch manned spacecraft

Tiangong 1 Parked And Waiting As Shenzhou 10 Mission Prep Continues

WATER WORLD
Station Crew Ringing in New Year

Expedition 34 Ready to Ring in New Year

New ISS crew docked at Space Station

Expedition 34 Spends Christmas in Space

WATER WORLD
CSF Applauds Passage Of Risk-Sharing Regime Extension For Launch Industry

Rokot Launch Set for January 15

Russian rocket launch rescheduled

Investigation into Proton Launch Anomaly Continues as Root Cause is being Evaluated

WATER WORLD
Billions and Billions of Planets

ALMA Shows How Young Star and Planets Grow Simultaneously

ALMA Sheds Light on Planet-Forming Gas Streams

A stray planet

WATER WORLD
COM DEV wins commercial contract from MacDonald Dettwiler and Associates

Thai 'scavengers club' turns trash to treasure

Malaysia convoy in Australia rare earth plant protest

All Systems Go for Highest Altitude Supercomputer




The content herein, unless otherwise known to be public domain, are Copyright 1995-2014 - Space Media Network. AFP, UPI and IANS news wire stories are copyright Agence France-Presse, United Press International and Indo-Asia News Service. ESA Portal Reports are copyright European Space Agency. All NASA sourced material is public domain. Additional copyrights may apply in whole or part to other bona fide parties. Advertising does not imply endorsement,agreement or approval of any opinions, statements or information provided by Space Media Network on any Web page published or hosted by Space Media Network. Privacy Statement