scuba diver and whale shark underwater

Project

Global Shark Conservation

Sharks have roamed our oceans since before the time of dinosaurs, but their long reign at the top of the ocean food web is in jeopardy. 

Each year, at least 63 million and as many as 273 million sharks are killed in the world’s commercial fisheries, many solely for their fins, which are used in shark fin soup. Almost half of the shark species and their relatives assessed by the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN) are threatened or near threatened with extinction.

Sharks are vital to ocean health. Protection and management of these species provide ecosystem, environmental, cultural, and economic benefits. To reverse the decline of sharks and rays, Pew works internationally to influence fishing nations and the treaty organizations that regulate high seas fisheries and trade in endangered species. We also work with governments to designate sanctuaries in waters that still have diverse populations of sharks and to advocate regionally and internationally for shark conservation.

PROJECT GOALS:
  • reverse the global decline of shark populations
  • work internationally to influence fishing nations and treaty organizations that regulate high seas fisheries
  • work with nations whose waters still have diverse populations of sharks to advocate for international shark conservation
Shark Sanctuary
Shark Sanctuary
Fact Sheet

Shark Sanctuaries Around the World

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Fact Sheet

Shark sanctuaries are useful tools for coastal and island governments seeking to reduce shark mortality in their waters. At least 100 million sharks are killed in commercial fisheries every year. Sanctuary designations typically prohibit the commercial fishing of all sharks, the retention of sharks caught as bycatch, and the possession, trade, and sale of sharks and shark products within a country’s full exclusive economic zone (EEZ). Some also ban fishing gear typically used to target sharks, such as wire leaders and shark lines. Because of the role that sharks play in maintaining ocean health, protecting them with sanctuaries provides ecosystem, environmental, cultural, and economic benefits.

shark
shark
Press Releases & Statements

Pew Commends Broad Global Support for Proposed Shark and Ray Protections

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Press Releases & Statements

Our Work

shark
Implementing New Shark Protections Worldwide
4min 54sec