27 September 2012 - The United States added their signature to the CMS Memorandum of Understanding for the Conservation of Cetaceans and their Habitats in the Pacific Islands Region (Pacific Cetaceans MOU) raising the number of signatories to 15.
The United States had already indicated their intention to sign at the 3rd Meeting of the Signatories to the Pacific Cetaceans MoU earlier this month in Noumea, New Caledonia.
At a ceremony in the margins of the 1st Meeting of the Signatories to the Memorandum of Understanding for the Conservation of Migratory Sharks, which is currently held in Bonn, Shannon G. Dionne, Acting Deputy Director of the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration’s Office of International Affairs (NOAA) signed the non-binding agreement on behalf of the United States.
Ms. Dionne expressed the strong commitment of her country to conserve these species and undertake joint efforts to address key threats such as entanglement and strategy response as well as emerging diseases in marine mammals.
Ms. Elizabeth Maruma Mrema, Acting Executive Secretary of CMS, highlighted the importance of the new signatory because of its capacity in granting technical and scientific support. This contribution would be indispensable to boosting conservation activities.
The participation of the United States in this regional initiative under CMS is expected to promote the implementation of the 2013-2017 action plan for whales and dolphins in the Pacific Islands Region adopted in Noumea.
For more information on the MOU and data on cetaceans in the region, refer to www.cms.int and www.pacificcetaceans.org.