Soon, it would be illegal to abuse or kill sharks and rays in Hawaii waters as the state lawmakers have proposed a ban on the same. The law is being supported by the state Department of Land and Natural Resources, the Office of Hawaiian Affairs, the Humane Society, and of course, many environmental organizations.
Violators of the proposal would face fines of $500 for a first offense and $10,000 for a third offense.
The islands are already at the forefront of enacting protections for sharks, but some say more work is needed to safeguard the animals at a time when the health of the world’s oceans is in decline.
Sharks and rays “are long-living and slow-growing, start reproducing at an advanced age, and produce relatively few offspring per year,” the measure before lawmakers says.
“Protection for sharks and rays ultimately means healthier, more resilient oceans and reefs that are better able to withstand other pressures on the ocean ecosystem from climate change and pollution.”