A U.S.-backed proposal to ban the export of Atlantic bluefin tuna prized in sushi was rejected Thursday by a U.N. wildlife meeting, with scores of developing nations joining Japan in opposing a measure they feared would devastate fishing economies.http://www.suntimes.com/news/world/2110274,atlantic-bluefin-tuna-ban-rejected-031810.article
Monaco introduced the proposal at the 175-nation Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species, or CITES. It argued that extreme measures for the iconic, migratory fish were necessary because the stocks have fallen by 75 percent due to widespread overfishing.
But as debate opened, it became clear that the proposal had little support. Only the United States, Norway and Kenya supported the proposal outright. The European Union asked that implementation be delayed until May 2011 to give authorities time to respond to concerns about overfishing.
. . . The tuna defeat came hours after delegates rejected a U.S. proposal to ban the international sale of polar bear skins and parts, showing that economic interest at this meeting appeared to be trumping conservation. It also raised the prospect that a CITES meeting that was packed with several dozen promising proposals could end next week in failure for environmentalists.
The Americans argued that the sale of polar bears skins is compounding the loss of the animals' sea ice habitat due to climate change. There are projections that the bear's numbers, which are estimated at 20,000 to 25,000, could decline by two-thirds due by 2050 due to habitat loss in the Arctic.
But Canada, Greenland and several indigenous communities argued the trade had little impact on the white bears population and would adversely effect their economies.
Countries which supported the global warming treaty - - pursuant to which funds would be transferred from the U.S. to third world nations - - oppose the bluefin tuna and polar bear export bans - - pursuant to which they would have to respect the environment and help preserve endangered species.
But, of course, the U.S. is deemed the threat to the environment.