December 14, 2012 was a big day for Atlantic menhaden. The Delaware representatives to the Atlantic States Marine Fisheries Commission joined in a historic vote to protect this small fish from future overfishing.
For the very first time, a coast-wide catch limit (Total Allowable Catch) was implemented for Atlantic menhaden, which have suffered in recent years from overfishing for the "fish reduction industry", which makes cosmetics, paints, industrial lubricants, animal feed and Omega 3 vitamin supplements from this small forage fish.
The Delaware Chapter of the Sierra Club is deeply concerned about the status of Atlantic menhaden. This fish was at one time considered among the most abundant off the coast of eastern North America. However, commercial fishing for Atlantic menhaden peaked in 1956 at 586,373 tonnes[i] and the current benchmark assessment shows menhaden to be hovering at a historically-low level of abundance.
The Delaware Chapter of the Sierra Club supports a prohibition of the possession, sale, and transport of shark fins within the State of Delaware.
Shark finning is a cruel and wasteful fishing practice, in which the fins of sharks are removed and the remainder of the shark is discarded back into the water. Without their fins, sharks die of blood loss or drown.