It seems sharks aren't the only ones disappointed over Burnaby's decision to not ban shark fin sales - a Vancouver activist was disgruntled to hear the news as well.
Anthony Marr of the Vancouver Animal Defense League made an appeal to council on the issue last June, which is what prompted the report from city staff that in the end recommended against enacting a shark fin ban.
At a council meeting Monday night, council voted against a shark fin ban bylaw, stating it's beyond the city's scope to regulate and enforce - but is within the federal and provincial government's.
"I'm very disappointed by Burnaby council," Marr told the Burnaby NOW in a phone interview. "They are passing the buck.
"They say there is no way they could enforce a law, which is absolutely erroneous, because city hall has the power to grant and rescind business licenses . and they further have the power to impose a fine."
The Vancouver activist said the dwindling shark populations don't have time to wait for "politicians dragging their feet," as approximately 73 million sharks are finned every year, including endangered and vulnerable species.
"There is no reason whatsoever that they are taking this rather cowardly step by not going ahead with this ban," Marr said.
"Everybody has to take responsibility and the municipalities should do their part, including Vancouver, Richmond and Burnaby."
But, a Burnaby shark advocate says shark fin bans are not the only avenue to tackle the issue.
Shark Truth founder Claudi Li said her organization tries to encourage conservation and business changes through education and compromise, and while it does support legislation, it does not directly lobby for it.
"Legislation is one tool in the tool box," Li told the Burnaby NOW.
She said the impetus should be put on the businesses and not the consumer to inspire change.
"When it comes to legislation, we hope cities and all jurisdictions will see their role as one that can empower change in addition to legislating change," Li said in a media release.
"For municipalities specifically, we encourage them to focus on the business aspect for legislation and not sale and possession."
All jurisdictions have the ability to do it, she added.
Li also said people should look out for the upcoming vote in the federal government this March, which will put the shark fin issue in the spotlight once again.
Two private member bills have been introduced into parliament by MPs Fin Donnelly and Elizabeth May. Donnelly's bill proposes to prohibit shark fin imports into Canada, while May's seeks to establish labelling and importing laws to verify the imported species and where it was caught.
At last year's Union of B.C. Municipalities conference, two resolutions were put forward on the issue as well.
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