CoP18 — Geneva, Switzerland
Compiled by Emmanuel Koro, African environmental journalist who has extensively written on environment and development issues in Africa
POLITICAL THOUGHT TO CONSIDER:
IN THIS ISSUE:
The World Wildlife Fund (WWF) is now a hardcore animal rights group.
• One of the most dominant of the Western environmental groups— the WWF has now declared itself a hardcore animal rights group!!!
• At the start of the CITES CoP18 meeting, the WWF will announce a plan to raise US$20-$25 million to end domestic ivory trade in Asian markets (China, Japan, Thailand, and Vietnam.)
THE SOURCE COMMENTS: This is harmful. The WWF’s ill-informed plan to shutdown Asian ivory markets will irreparably damage African people and wildlife’s wellbeing, particularly elephant conservation.
• THOUGHT How will the money raised help shut down ivory markets?
• The WWF’s planned shutdown of the Asian ivory markets will force African governments to divert their poverty alleviation and public infrastructure budgets to support wildlife conservation. Not good for Africa.
• The WWF has effectively joined other hardcore animal rights groups (Born Free Foundation, International Fund for Animal Welfare, Humane Society of the United States and People for Ethical Treatment for Animals.
THE SOURCE COMMENTS: These groups work against conservation and development interests of African countries, particularly the elephant- overpopulated Southern African countries.
• For the past 44 years, Southern African rural communities of Botswana, Namibia, South Africa, Zambia, and Zimbabwe have continued to pin their hopes for a better life on getting CITES permission to trade their abundant wildlife products.
THE SOURCE COMMENTS: If these communities, who share the land with wild species, can earn money from the wildlife that surrounds and endangers them, they will stop aiding poachers. In fact, when they have a stake in the long-term wellbeing of wildlife, poaching will end.
They will stop it. “I was once a poacher but have since stopped upon seeing community benefits from wildlife,” said the late Botswana Deputy Chief of Kavimba, Kachikau Village, Luckson Masule, in 1997. Without trade in ivory and rhino horn and with an absence of hunting, Africa has no money to look after its wildlife.