The Second Meeting of Signatories (MOS2) to the Convention on the Conservation of Migratory Species of Wild Animals (CMS) Memorandum of Understanding on the Conservation of Migratory Sharks (Sharks MOU) began Monday in San José, Costa Rica. Melanie Virtue, CMS Secretariat, welcomed participants, highlighting the growing profile of shark management and indicated that the MOU, signed 12 February 2010, is celebrating its sixth birthday. Edgar Gutiérrez Espeleta, Minister of Environment and Energy, Costa Rica, offered a keynote, underscoring the critical role of sharks for marine ecosystems and economies, and referenced national and bilateral efforts to protect marine resources.
In the morning, the meeting heard two presentations. Kryssia Brade, United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) on behalf of Alice Harding Shackelford, UNDP, advised moving away from unsustainable shark fishing practices. Sarah Fowler, Save Our Seas Foundation, and the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN) Species Survival Commission (SSC) Shark Specialist Group, noted that well-managed sharks and rays support, inter alia, fisheries and food security. MOS2 proceeded, discussing: the provisional rules of procedure; election of officers, electing Fernando Mora Rodríguez, Vice Minister of Waters, Oceans, Coasts and Wetlands (Costa Rica) as Chair, and Scott Gallacher (New Zealand) as Vice Chair; adoption of the agenda; credentials; and admission of observers. MOS2 heard reports from the CMS Secretariat, the Advisory Committee (AC), the Intersessional Working Group (IWG) and observer reports. A side event followed, addressing “Global Shark Conservation Strategy and Priorities for CMS Parties,” organized by Shark Advocates International and partners.
In the afternoon, MOS2 discussed two proposals to amend the MOU’s text, introduced by the European Union (EU), and draft Rules of Procedure, introduced by IWG Chair Jamie Rendell (UK).
In the evening, participants attended a reception, hosted by the Government of Costa Rica, which included a presentation on endangered scalloped hammerhead sharks.
Sarah Fowler, Save our Seas Foundation, and IUCN SSC Shark Specialist Group
Melanie Virtue, CMS Secretariat
Edgar Gutiérrez Espeleta, Minister of Environment and Energy, Costa Rica
Kryssia Brade, UNDP
João Loureiro, Portugal
Oliver Schall, Germany
Melanie Virtue, CMS Secretariat, and Chair Fernando Mora Rodríguez, Vice Minister of Waters, Oceans, Coasts and Wetlands, Costa Rica
IWG Co-Chair Cheri McCarty (US)
Andrea Pauly, CMS Secretariat