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International Update Volume 46, Issue 1

INDIA'S SUPREME COURT UPHOLDS BAN ON SALE OF DIESEL CARS IN NEW DELHI

India

The Supreme Court of India upheld a temporary ban on selling large diesel cars in New Delhi. This ban aims to counter toxic smog conditions in India's capital city. New Delhi is one of the most polluted cities in the world, with air quality worse than in Beijing. Proponents of the rule would like to see the ban extended to smaller diesel cars and other cities in India. The Supreme Court stated that it was considering expanding the ban to diesel cars with engine capacity of less than 2,000 cc but planned to seek industry input first.

PERU BANS FISHING OF MANTA RAYS AND MANDATES RELEASE OF BYCATCH

Ecuador, Mexico, Peru, Phillipines

On December 31, 2015, Peru’s Minister of Production passed a resolution that banned fishing of manta rays, among other stipulations. The resolution requires that mantas that are caught must be released immediately back into the ocean. The largest known populations of giant manta rays live in Peru and Ecuador. Ecuador began protecting manta rays in 2010, and Peru’s new ban adds to this protection. Other countries, including the Republic of Maldives, Mexico, and the Philippines, have passed regulations for manta ray protection.

BELIZE BANS OFFSHORE DRILLING ALONG BARRIER REEF

Belize

Belize has reversed a plan to allow offshore exploration and drilling and introduced a ban that prohibits these activities in areas within one kilometer of the Belize Barrier Reef system or within World Heritage Sites. The banned areas comprise 15% percent of the country’s marine territory. Belize has a total of seven UNESCO World Heritage Sites within its territory, and they have been on the List of World Heritage Sites in Danger since 2009 because of lack of solid conservation policy.