Leonardo DiCaprio has penned a letter to members of the California State Senate in support of Assembly Bill 376, which would prohibit the sale of shark fins in California.
“The International Union for the Conservation of Nature has concluded that a third of shark species are now threatened with extinction of some kind,” reads the letter, which has also been signed by the CEO of The Humane Society, the Executive Director of WildAid and the President of the Natural Resources Defense Council . “And recent estimates state that up to 73 million sharks are killed each year for use in shark fin soup and other products. Traditionally shark fin was affordable only to the elite, and consequently the issue of decimation of species was not a concern. But with the explosion of the world’s population, and an increasing number of wealthy consumers, this can no longer be considered true, as has been evidenced by the decimation of shark populations worldwide. Despite fisheries attempts at regulation, the inhumane practice of finning continues unabated too, as does the illegal capture of sharks from marine reserves and sovereign waters.”
The bill is an effort to save sharks and the oceans by banning the possession, sale, trade and distribution of shark fins in California. In addition to DiCaprio, AB 376 is supported by a host of prominent celebrities, including Edward Norton, Scarlett Johansson, Ke$ha, Kristen Bell, Paul Rudd and Chinese basketball great Yao Ming