(Dive Travel Business News - March 10, 2011) -- Palau is taking strides to preserve its natural resources, including sharks, whales, jelly fish, dolphins, agriculture, aquaculture and coral reefs. Eco-friendly practices are indigenous to the local culture and traditions and are now becoming a springboard for the island nation as several Palauan entities are enhancing their practices.
Palau’s former president, Tommy E. Remengesau, a key supporter of Shark Sanctuary, signed into law on Sept. 5, 2003, some of the world toughest shark protection legislation with heavy penalty of up to $250,000 per incident for violation. The ground-breaking legislation remains the law in Palau today, despite recent efforts to overturn. In January 2004, Palau received international recognition from Shark Project as a recipient of their first Shark Guardian of the year for passage of such tough shark protection law. read more »
(Dive Travel Business News - June 3, 2010) -- The Maldives’ nation continues to be a frontrunner in environmental activism with their latest announcement that offers complete protection for sharks in its 90,000 sq.kms (34,750 sq.miles) of Maldives territorial waters. The huge shark sanctuary will be free of all shark fishing and finning, protecting more than 30 different species that make their home in the region. The Maldives has further banned all imports and exports of shark fins and shark products.
"The Maldives were one of the first countries to recognize that sharks were a key reason tourists went to dive there," said Matt Rand, Director of Global Shark Conservation for the Pew Environment Group. "Today's announcement protects the Maldives' tourism industry - the largest segment of their economy - from the ravages of the shark fin trade. It is a bold and farsighted move on the part of the government of the Maldives." read more »
(Dive Travel Business News - June 2, 2010) -- With half of the world's sharks threatened with extinction, Palau created the world's first "shark sanctuary" in 2009. One of the smallest nation's in the world, Palau declared its entire Exclusive Economic Zone a shark sanctuary that protects about 600,000 sq km (230,000 sq miles) of ocean, an area about the size of France. Conservationists regarded the move as "game-changing" but enforcement is a problem due to the high demand for prestigious shark fin soup. read more »