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London gathering against the wildlife trade: Final war?

  • February 19th, 2014
  • Posted by EU Australia

Wildlife 9The London Conference on the Illegal Wildlife Trade fired the first shots, 13.2.14, in what is being announced as a stepped-up, and desperate new campaign to save world wildlife from heavy, increasing, and terminal poaching.

It named and confronted Asian markets for the trivialised use of  objects from animals that have now become precious and almost unimaginably expensive – as status symbols, and ingredients for obscure special foods.

Wildlife 8The gathering was convened by the British Prime Minister, David Cameron, with the successor Head of State, Prince Charles, and his son Prince William.

It included representatives of 50 states, including African Presidents, and representatives of a phalanx of protection agencies, declaring they were facing a flare-up of activity, rolling back gains made over decades – heading them towards a final battle.

Plans were laid out for a new organisation to coordinate future actions.

Said The Guardian, 13.2.14:

Wildlife 5“The meeting at Lancaster House is one of the highest-level gatherings to date to tackle the illegal ivory trade, which is estimated to be worth £12bn a year (A$18.26-billion; xe.com, 19.2.14) and has seen activity more than double since 2007, according to a Chatham House report published on Wednesday.

Wildlife 2“Demand from an increasingly affluent Asian middle class, in particular in China and Vietnam, has driven the price of rhino horn to more than $60,000 per kilogram (A$66459)  – more than the price of gold and cocaine – and ivory to around $2,000/kg (A$2215).

Wildlife 3 Wildlife 4“A study this week shows five countries in central Africa lost 65% of their forest elephant population between 2002 and 2011, with Gabon experiencing the biggest losses. South Africa alone lost more than 1,000 rhinos to poachers in 2013, a 50% increase on the year before, and up from just 13 in 2007.”

Wildlife 6Appeals to Asian governments hosting the outlawed  trade have seen some legislative moves and police action, but without severe pressure on them, not on the scale of recognition that would hope to extinguish it.

See EUAustralia Online, “Economic Miracle: Bad news for animals”, 26.11.12,

Reference

HM Governement – UK, London,  London Conference on the Illegal Wildlife Trade 2014. https://www.gov.uk/government/topical-events/illegal-wildlife-trade-2014/about, (19.2.14).

Adam Vaughan, Illegal wildlife trade: 50 nations gather in London for high-level summit, 13.2.14. http://www.theguardian.com/environment/2014/feb/12/illegal-wildlife-trade-50-nations-london-summit, (19.2.14).

Pictures

ed.fnal.gov; guardian, uwax.edu, wildliferesearch.org, wildasia.org, wwf

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