More than 100 wildfires are still raging across Australia, with record-breaking temperatures and drought contributing to the loss of more than six million hectares of land that is home to some of the most unique plants and animals in the world. In an interview with UN News, John Scanlon, Special Envoy for the African Parks non-profit organization and former Secretary-General of CITES – the UN-backed Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species – said that the increasing threat to biodiversity must be “lifted up to the international agenda”. More
On Tuesday 6 June, the Secretary-General of the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora (CITES), Mr John Scanlon gave a Diplomatic Briefing on the role of CITES, as well as the wildlife trade, sustainable tourism and his recent visit to the Pacific, at the UNIC Canberra office.
Mr Scanlon opened the briefing with an overview of CITES – the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora.
He explained that CITES was adopted in 1973 with the intent to protect international trade of species to prevent wildlife and plants from becoming endangered.
There are currently 183 parties, with the United States the first to join in 1975 and Tonga the last country to join in 2016. He also explained how CITES have compliance measures in place which help control legal trade. There have been over one million legal trade transactions reported to CITES.
He expressed his concerns of illegal wildlife trade and the impact it has on the world, particularly in developing countries. He also mentioned that there has been a surge in illegal trade particularly in Rosewood, and Pangolins and that illegal trade is affecting 50% of world heritage sites. Thirteen sites are on the endangered list due to poaching.
The illegal trade in marine species is one of the major issues that needs to be under the spotlight at the UN Ocean Conference this week. That’s according to John Scanlon, head of the UN body that monitors implementation of an international agreement that helps ensure the survival of nearly 40,000 animal and plant species in the wild. Corals, sharks, dolphins and whales are among the marine species covered by the agreement, known as the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora, or CITES.
Julia Dean spoke to Secretary-General Scanlon, who is in Australia, and asked him about his hopes for the conference.
What can we do as individuals to stop illegal trade in wildlife? Why is the UN Oceans Conference next week important in order to stop illegal trading in marine species. What convention protects sharks, corals, mantra rays, elephants and many more.
What organisation monitors and stops the illegal trade of wildlife and flora? And how can it help alleviate poverty?
What about wildlife and sustainable tourism how do they work together for the benefit of local communities? What is a good example?
Listen to this interview we did with the Secretary-General of CITES (Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna & Flora)Mr John.E.Scanlon and find out!
UN Environment Programme Executive Director Achim Steiner released the following statement following the conclusion of negotiations on the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) trade deal. The TPP contains unprecedented provisions to combat illegal wildlife trade, including requirements for the 12 countries involved to protect wildlife covered under the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora (CITES) from illegal trade, and to take action to protect any wildlife that has been taken illegally from any country. Continue reading