U.S. unveils a National Strategy for Combating Wildlife Trafficking as World Leaders Gather
This is going to be a big week for the global efforts to combat illegal wildlife trade. As I write this, world leaders from North America, Europe, Asia and Africa have gathered in London to tackle the issue of wildlife crime. Tomorrow they are expected to announce major commitments in the global fight to stop wildlife crime
Yesterday, almost in prelude, the White House unveiled its first-ever National Strategy for Combating Wildlife Trafficking. This strategy was developed by the Presidential Advisory Council on Wildlife Trafficking. Both WWF and TRAFFIC sit on this council.
The US is a critically important consumer market and transit point in global wildlife crime. But it is also a leader in mobilizing major influence and leadership to tackle the issue internationally.
The US national strategy will focus on three key areas:
- Strengthening enforcement and mobilizing new federal agencies in the fight to stop wildlife crime (such as money-laundering authorities and intelligence experts).
- Reducing consumer demand for illegally traded wildlife.
- Building international cooperation, commitment and public-private partnerships.
The document highlights the immediate crisis facing elephants and rhinos while also calling attention to lower-profile but equally exploited species such as pangolins, tunas, corals and tarantulas. The full document can be downloaded here: http://worldwildlife.org/publications/national-strategy-for-combating-wildlife-trafficking.
Now I can’t wait to hear what new initiatives will be announced tomorrow from London. It should be an exciting day…