New Video Promotes BNT Message

Friday 06th, January 2012 / 10:10 Published by

Bahamas National Trust

The Bahamas National Trust (BNT) is increasing their efforts to protect sharks in the waters of The Bahamas and is doing so with the help of two very influential methods – the youth and new media.

The organization recently joined forces with the Pew Environment Group to produce a public service announcement video that was released via Youtube and features children from around various islands in the Bahamas, including Grand Bahama, Abaco, Eleuthera, Andros, New Providence, Cat Island and others.

Creatively shot, the video also has signature landmarks behind each of the children such as the Torii Gate behind the Grand Bahamian and a lighthouse behind the Abaconian.

In the video, the youngsters report, “Shark populations are in trouble globally. Thirty percent of shark… species are endangered,” and that “the demand for shark fins, liver oil and other products have driven numerous populations to the brink of extinction.”

They noted that the growing demand for shark fin soup has lead to the killing of up to 73 million sharks per year and that sharks take a long time to have babies and only having a few at a time, this makes them vulnerable to overfishing.

The announcement also informed that the Bahamas is one of few locations where a healthy and diverse shark population still exists and continues with each child saying, “please”…”protect our sharks.”

The video concludes with Shelley Cant, a BNT Education officer encouraging views to sign the petition to amend regulations for the protection of sharks.

The organization notes that “The Bahamas, with a 20-year-old ban on longline fishing gear has left its waters as one of the few places in the world with relatively healthy shark populations” and according to The Bahamas Diving Association, “diving tourism has contributed up to $800 million to the Bahamian economy since the longline ban.”

However, with no laws on the books to specifically protect sharks, Pew is working with The Bahamas National Trust to gain permanent protections in all of The Bahamas’ Exclusive Economic Zone, an area encompassing approximately 630,000 square kilometers of ocean. By establishing such protections for sharks the organization believes not only will sharks be permanently safeguarded against other threats, but the health of the marine environment and the economy of The Bahamas will be conserved for generations to come.

By Nathaniel Lewis
Freeport News

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