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NY Gov Signs Law Protecting Sharks

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New York is banning trade in shark fins starting next summer in an effort to protect the marine predators.

Gov. Andrew Cuomo, who signed the law Friday, says an estimated 73 million sharks are killed worldwide to meet the market demand. The fins are used in soup popular in Chinese cuisine.

So-called "finning" of sharks is already illegal in U.S. and New York coastal waters. The practice involves catching sharks, cutting off their fins and returning them to the water to die.

Cuomo calls the practice inhumane and says it also upsets ecosystems by eliminating the ocean predators.

The law effective next July 1 accommodates some of the demand by allowing the sale of fins from two species of dogfish, considered the most abundant shark in the North Atlantic.

Copyright 2013 The Associated Press.

Dave Lucas is WAMC’s Capital Region Bureau Chief. Born and raised in Albany, he’s been involved in nearly every aspect of local radio since 1981. Before joining WAMC, Dave was a reporter and anchor at WGY in Schenectady. Prior to that he hosted talk shows on WYJB and WROW, including the 1999 series of overnight radio broadcasts tracking the JonBenet Ramsey murder case with a cast of callers and characters from all over the world via the internet. In 2012, Dave received a Communicator Award of Distinction for his WAMC news story "Fail: The NYS Flood Panel," which explores whether the damage from Hurricane Irene and Tropical Storm Lee could have been prevented or at least curbed. Dave began his radio career as a “morning personality” at WABY in Albany.
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