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Cebu Pacific bans Shark Fin carriage

July 9, 2014 Responsible Tourism No Comments Email Email

The Philippines’ leading carrier, Cebu Pacific (PSE: CEB) announced that the airline no longer accepts carriage of shark fin. The airline has formalized a freight policy for immediate implementation and strict compliance across Cebu Pacific stations.

The ban also extends to meals inflight or during corporate events. Cebu Pacific does not serve shark’s fin soup inflight or at corporate events or meals organized and hosted by the airline.

“Cebu Pacific values biodiversity and marine life sustainability. We are banning shark fin carriage effective immediately as we learned that unsustainable shark fishing and our carriage of shark fin is not aligned with CEB’s position on sustainable development. We have been working closely with the World Wide Fund for Nature (WWF) in our efforts to address some of the most pressing environmental concerns including climate change and marine life preservation,” said Atty. Jorenz Tanada, CEB VP for Corporate Affairs.

“WWF welcomes this development,” said WWF-Philippines Vice-chair and CEO Jose Ma. Lorenzo Tan. “For several years now, Cebu Pacific passengers have helped fund WWF’s conservation efforts in our two great Philippine reefs – Tubbataha in Palawan and Apo in Mindoro. Cebu Pacific’s decision to make this new counterpart gesture in support of the conservation of Philippine sharks will most certainly help disrupt the transport chains that fuel this highly destructive trade. WWF lauds this decision as a manifestation of Cebu Pacific’s continuing commitment to conserve marine biodiversity and promote sustainable fisheries, here in the Philippines.  As we face a climate-defined future, it is the right thing to do.”

WWF estimates 73 million sharks are killed yearly for their fins and flesh. Sharks are apex or top-level predators that keep the stocks of other fish in check. Halting the trade in shark fins can boost the productivity of oceans.

Since 2008, Cebu Pacific had been implementing the Bright Skies for Every Juan program in partnership with the World Wide Fund for Nature (WWF-Philippines). The program allows Cebu Pacific passengers to make donations while booking their flights online.  CEB’s website estimates carbon emissions based on air travel duration and guests can opt to donate a small amount based on that estimate, to effectively offset carbon emissions.

Proceeds support community-based climate adaptation projects for Apo Reef and the municipalities of Sablayan, in Occidental Mindoro and Cagayancillo in Palawan. Two of the biggest coral reefs in the country – Apo Reef and Tubbataha Reefs – have now received stronger conservation and rehabilitation efforts, as the program has generated over P25 million since the program started.

Donations to the Bright Skies for Every Juan program can be made while booking flights online via www.cebupacificair.com.

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