Shark Allies' Role in Shark Fin Trade Legislation


In 2010 landmark legislation was introduced by Hawaii State Senator Clayton Hee.

It was the first of its kind; a prohibition on the sale, possession and trade of shark fins. We were fortunate to be part of his team and worked side by side in the development and advocacy for this bill. At the time, there wasn’t much hope in the conservation world that this would have a chance of passing. But we persisted and Hawaii became the first State to pass such a law. The lessons we learned were invaluable and we were able to implement this approach in other regions.

Stefanie Brendl, founder of Shark Allies, then moved on and worked in collaboration with many other fantastic advocacy and conservation groups to introduce bills in California, Guam, the Northern Mariana Islands, the Marshall Islands, the Federated States of Micronesia and consulted on many of the US State bills. Depending on the region, Stefanie also worked for WildAid, Shark Savers and the Pew Global Shark Conservation to address the shark fin issue or help establish Shark Sanctuaries.

To date 12 US states, 3 territories and many Pacific Island Nations have modeled their regulations on the original Hawaii bill.

Laurel Irvine