Text: H.R.5461 — 106th Congress (1999-2000)All Information (Except Text)
Public Law No: 106-557 (12/21/2000)
[106th Congress Public Law 557]
[From the U.S. Government Printing Office]
SHARK FINNING PROHIBITION ACT
[[Page 114 STAT. 2772]]
Public Law 106-557
To amend the Magnuson-Stevens Fishery Conservation and Management Act to
eliminate the wasteful and unsportsmanlike practice of shark
finning. <<NOTE: Dec. 21, 2000 - [H.R. 5461]>>
Be it enacted by the Senate and House of Representatives of the
United States of America in Congress <<NOTE: Shark Finning Prohibition
SECTION <<NOTE: 16 USC 1822 note.>> 1. SHORT TITLE.
This Act may be cited as the ``Shark Finning Prohibition Act''.
SEC. <<NOTE: 16 USC 1822 note.>> 2. PURPOSE.
The purpose of this Act is to eliminate shark-finning by addressing
the problem comprehensively at both the national and international
SEC. <<NOTE: 16 USC 1822 note.>> 3. PROHIBITION ON REMOVING SHARK FIN
AND DISCARDING SHARK CARCASS AT SEA.
Section 307(1) of the Magnuson-Stevens Fishery Conservation and
Management Act (16 U.S.C. 1857(1)) is amended--
(1) by striking ``or'' after the semicolon in subparagraph
(2) by striking ``section 302( j)(7)(A).'' in subparagraph
(O) and inserting ``section 302( j)(7)(A); or''; and
(3) by adding at the end the following:
``(P)(i) to remove any of the fins of a shark
(including the tail) and discard the carcass of the
shark at sea;
``(ii) to have custody, control, or possession of
any such fin aboard a fishing vessel without the
corresponding carcass; or
``(iii) to land any such fin without the
For purposes of subparagraph (P) there is a rebuttable
presumption that any shark fins landed from a fishing vessel or
found on board a fishing vessel were taken, held, or landed in
violation of subparagraph (P) if the total weight of shark fins
landed or found on board exceeds 5 percent of the total weight
of shark carcasses landed or found on board.''.
SEC. <<NOTE: 16 USC 1822 note.>> 4. REGULATIONS.
No <<NOTE: Deadline.>> later than 180 days after the date of the
enactment of this Act, the Secretary of Commerce shall promulgate
regulations implementing the provisions of section 3076(1)(P) of the
Magnuson-Stevens Fishery Conservation and Management Act (16 U.S.C.
1857(1)(P)), as added by section 3 of this Act.
[[Page 114 STAT. 2773]]
SEC. <<NOTE: 16 USC 1822 note.>> 5. INTERNATIONAL NEGOTIATIONS.
The Secretary of Commerce, acting through the Secretary of State,
(1) initiate discussions as soon as possible for the purpose
of developing bilateral or multilateral agreements with other
nations for the prohibition on shark-finning;
(2) initiate discussions as soon as possible with all
foreign governments which are engaged in, or which have persons
or companies engaged in shark-finning, for the purposes of--
(A) collecting information on the nature and extent
of shark-finning by such persons and the landing or
transshipment of shark fins through foreign ports; and
(B) entering into bilateral and multilateral
treaties with such countries to protect such species;
(3) seek agreements calling for an international ban on
shark-finning and other fishing practices adversely affecting
these species through the United Nations, the Food and
Agriculture Organization's Committee on Fisheries, and
appropriate regional fishery management bodies;
(4) initiate the amendment of any existing international
treaty for the protection and conservation of species of sharks
to which the United States is a party in order to make such
treaty consistent with the purposes and policies of this
(5) urge other governments involved in fishing for or
importation of shark or shark products to fulfill their
obligations to collect biological data, such as stock abundance
and by-catch levels, as well as trade data, on shark species as
called for in the 1995 Resolution on Cooperation with FAO with
Regard to study on the Status of Sharks and By-Catch of Shark
(6) urge other governments to prepare and submit their
respective National Plan of Action for the Conservation and
Management of Sharks to the 2001 session of the FAO Committee on
Fisheries, as set forth in the International Plan of Action for
the Conservation and Management of Sharks.
SEC. <<NOTE: 16 USC 1822 note.>> 6. REPORT TO CONGRESS.
The Secretary of Commerce, in consultation with the Secretary of
State, shall provide to Congress, by not later than 1 year after the
date of the enactment of this Act, and every year thereafter, a report
(1) includes a list that identifies nations whose vessels
conduct shark-finning and details the extent of the
international trade in shark fins, including estimates of value
and information on harvesting of shark fins, and landings or
transshipment of shark fins through foreign ports;
(2) describes the efforts taken to carry out this Act, and
evaluates the progress of those efforts;
(3) sets forth a plan of action to adopt international
measures for the conservation of sharks; and
(4) includes recommendations for measures to ensure that
United States actions are consistent with national,
international, and regional obligations relating to shark
populations, including those listed under the Convention on
International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Flora and
[[Page 114 STAT. 2774]]
SEC. <<NOTE: 16 USC 1822 note.>> 7. RESEARCH.
The Secretary of Commerce, subject to the availability of
appropriations authorized by section 10, shall establish a research
program for Pacific and Atlantic sharks to engage in the following data
collection and research:
(1) The collection of data to support stock assessments of
shark populations subject to incidental or directed harvesting
by commercial vessels, giving priority to species according to
vulnerability of the species to fishing gear and fishing
mortality, and its population status.
(2) Research to identify fishing gear and practices that
prevent or minimize incidental catch of sharks in commercial and
(3) Research on fishing methods that will ensure maximum
likelihood of survival of captured sharks after release.
(4) Research on methods for releasing sharks from fishing
gear that minimize risk of injury to fishing vessel operators
(5) Research on methods to maximize the utilization of, and
funding to develop the market for, sharks not taken in violation
of a fishing management plan approved under section 303 or
section 307(1)(P) of the Magnuson-Stevens Fishery Conservation
and Management Act (16 U.S.C. 1853, 1857(1)(P)).
(6) Research on the nature and extent of the harvest of
sharks and shark fins by foreign fleets and the international
trade in shark fins and other shark products.
SEC. <<NOTE: 16 USC 1822 note.>> 8. WESTERN PACIFIC LONGLINE FISHERIES
COOPERATIVE RESEARCH PROGRAM.
The National Marine Fisheries Service, in consultation with the
Western Pacific Fisheries Management Council, shall initiate a
cooperative research program with the commercial longlining industry to
carry out activities consistent with this Act, including research
described in section 7 of this Act. The service may initiate such shark
cooperative research programs upon the request of any other fishery
SEC. <<NOTE: 16 USC 1822 note.>> 9. SHARK-FINNING DEFINED.
In this Act, the term ``shark-finning'' means the taking of a shark,
removing the fin or fins (whether or not including the tail) of a shark,
and returning the remainder of the shark to the sea.
[[Page 114 STAT. 2775]]
SEC. <<NOTE: 16 USC 1822 note.>> 10. AUTHORIZATION OF APPROPRIATIONS.
There are authorized to be appropriated to the Secretary of Commerce
for fiscal years 2001 through 2005 such sums as are necessary to carry
out this Act.
Approved December 21, 2000.
LEGISLATIVE HISTORY--H.R. 5461:
CONGRESSIONAL RECORD, Vol. 146 (2000):
Oct. 30, considered and passed House.
Dec. 7, considered and passed Senate.
WEEKLY COMPILATION OF PRESIDENTIAL DOCUMENTS, Vol. 36 (2000):
Dec. 26, Presidential statement.