Your daily dose of bad news about
poaching, wildlife and environmental
crimes from around the world
under the spotlight today ……………………
Who said, yesterday,: “Demand for valuable tropical timber, from Europe and China in particular has sent illegal logging spiralling out of control.”? The answer can be found in this newsletter. This raises another question – ‘why do EU bureaucrats and CITES MA’s continue to permit illegal wood to enter their countries?’ It’s been going on for – well, let’s see, …, as long as we can remember. The Netherlands is the latest country to be ‘named http://www.greenpeace.org.uk/blog/forests/update-illegal-amazon-timber-heading-rotterdam-20141105 and shamed’ by Greenpeace. Somewhat ironically, Greenpeace’s headquarters are in The Netherlands.
No 265 Wildlife Trade News 14th November 2014
Liberia: ‘Animal and Forest’ Law Passed, Will the Liberian Senate Concur? http://allafrica.com/stories/201411131458.html
China’s old-growth forests vanishing http://scienceblog.com/75309/chinas-old-growth-forests-vanishing/#4fjmJUDzZdwJgkFt.97
Ivory ban could be headed to Hawaii State is third largest ivory retailer in United States Read more: http://www.kitv.com/news/ivory-ban-could-be-headed-to-hawaii/29709774#ixzz3J1VAkPit
2 endangered turtles confiscated from mini zoo in Malaysia – See more at: http://news.asiaone.com/news/malaysia/2-endangered-turtles-confiscated-mini-zoo-malaysia#sthash.ERQ67Ky8.dpuf (NA COMMENT: The Sabah wildlife authorities had, as usual, to be shamed by an NGO into taking this action.)
“Those who have the privilege to know
have the duty to act.”
― Albert Einstein
CITES SECRETARIAT: In our last newsletter we asked if the CITES Secretary General would release a statement concerning the latest illegal haul of ivory to be shipped to CHINA. We need clarity and some answers from these civil servants, don’t we? Or, we will all be left to imagine for ourselves –why the silence from the Secretariat – and Chairman of the Standing Committee. Let’s hope we will soon see a statement from at least one of them.
Remember: CITES doesn’t own the wildlife. We (as in people worldwide) do. And we pay CITES officials the world over to conform to as well as enforce the CITES Convention. If they don’t, it is up to us to hold them accountable, isn’t it? If we don’t, who will? If YOU don’t, who will?
From the crime scene to the courtroom: ICCWC releases Guidelines on ivory http://cites.org/eng/ICCWC_guidelines
CHINESE AUTHORITIES kill 10 baby gorillas
they imported from Guinea.
To obtain those 10 poachers will have shot or mutilated about adults who would have tried to protect their babies from being captured and sold to Chinese zoos with approval of the Chinese CITES MA. The CITES Secretariat and Standing Committee, inexplicably, defended China….does that surprise you? Imagine this: If Guinea had imported 10 giant pandas with false documentation, would China A) have accepted this? B) demanded the return of the pandas C) also demanded CITES take no excuses from Guinea D) started a war against Guinea?
Here are some relevant and free reports you may well find of considerable interest:
China Extends Diplomatic Blitz to Southeast Asia extract: Myanmar is making a deal with the devil. I’ve been there. The teak flows out of Myanmar like water and the forests are not put back. https://www.google.com/search?hl=en&gl=uk&tbm=nws&authuser=0&q=wildlife&oq=wildlife&gs_l=news-cc.3..43j0j43i53.4092.5795.0.6184.108.40.206.220.127.116.11.318.104.22.168…0.0…1ac.1.POcnXow4PW8#q=forests&hl=en-GB&gl=uk&authuser=0&tbs=sbd:1&tbm=nws&start=20
Wildlife in jeopardy due to huge construction projects in İstanbul http://www.todayszaman.com/national_wildlife-in-jeopardy-due-to-huge-construction-projects-in-istanbul_364213.html
Sundarban National Park under significant threat due to failed conservation system: IUCN http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/home/environment/flora-fauna/Sundarban-National-Park-under-significant-threat-due-to-failed-conservation-system-IUCN/articleshow/45137183.cms
Overhunting of large animals has catastrophic effects on trees http://phys.org/news/2014-11-overhunting-large-animals-catastrophic-effects.html
GOF seizes logs worth RM500,000 (SARAWAK/MALAYSIA) http://www.theborneopost.com/2014/11/13/gof-seizes-logs-worth-rm500000/
Give prominence to improve forest governance – Sam SABAH/MALAYSIA
Read more: http://www.theborneopost.com/2014/11/13/give-prominence-to-improve-forest-governance-sam/#ixzz3IxmMAkfB
Steps in Vietnam Toward Ending Illegal Bear Bile Trade http://www.bignewsnetwork.com/index.php/sid/227583405
Man arrested on 224 horseshoe crab, conch charges. USA http://www.delawareonline.com/story/news/local/2014/11/14/man-arrested-horseshoe-crab-conch-charges/19011809/
Park Rangers Go Naked to Protect Rhinos
Specific areas reserved for hunters. MALTA http://www.timesofmalta.com/articles/view/20141114/editorial/Specific-areas-reserved-for-hunters.543924
New UN guidelines issued to counter ‘critically high’ levels of elephant poaching in Africa http://www.bignewsnetwork.com/index.php/sid/227619023
Seized animals counted. CAMBODIA: extract: More than 1,000 animals, including a number of rare and critically endangered species, were seized and rescued from poachers across Cambodia in the past three months, Wildlife Alliance (WA) said yesterday.
Wildlife charities launch anti-poaching campaign in Africa http://www.shanghaidaily.com/article/article_xinhua.aspx?id=252428
Australian Dredging Threatens Great Barrier Reef and Wetlands
Endangered plants to get protection under wildlife law. INDIA http://www.hindustantimes.com/india-news/endangered-plants-to-get-protection-under-wildlife-law/article1-1285876.aspx
Big shots in the RAPE of Cameron Highlands MALAYSIA
Full article: http://www.malaysia-chronicle.com/index.php?option=com_k2&view=item&id=398991:head-big-shots-in-the-rape-of-cameron-highlands&Itemid=2#ixzz3J1a8aRg0
Drive against wild life crime, illegal trade, killing of waterbirds of Loktak Lake
A one day drive against wild life crime, illegal trade, killing and poisoning of waterbirds of Loktak Lake on 13 Nov, 2014 http://e-pao.net/epSubPageExtractor.asp?src=news_section.Press_Release.Press_Release_2014.Drive_against_wild_life_crime_illegal_trade_killing_of_waterbirds_of_Loktak_Lake_20141114
Bill to increase permanent reserve forests passed SABAH/MALAYSIA http://www.theborneopost.com/2014/11/14/bill-to-increase-permanent-reserve-forests-passed/
Australia’s small rainforest conservation steps overshadowed by broader assault on environment (commentary) http://news.mongabay.com/2014/1112-laurance-australia-researcher-perspectives.html?n3ws1ttr#sthash.Q2nTlW1C.TIyrAZum.dpbs
If a Tree Falls Without a Permit… One year after Typhoon Haiyan wreaked havoc across the Philippines, the country is turning to illegal loggers to help bring one of its most important industries back from the brink.http://www.foreignpolicy.com/articles/2014/11/13/if_a_tree_falls_without_a_permit_illegal_logging_philippines_haiyan_rebuilding
GREENPEACE PRESS RELEASE: Congo’s forest communities suffer at the hands of irresponsible forestry sector
Kinshasa, 13 November 2014 – Logging companies in the Democratic Republic of Congo are plundering forests, using physical intimidation against local communities and failing to meet their obligations to improve local infrastructure, according to villagers’ testimonies gathered by Greenpeace Africa.
Residents in Equateur province complain that companies, including Sicobois and Cotrefor, arrive in their villages, log and export all the wood they want without delivering on all of their promises of social development before they then, in some cases, leave again with little notice.
“The so-called model of socio-economic development that industrial logging companies in the DRC claim they promote in their concession areas is, in reality, a nightmare for surrounding communities,” says Irène Wabiwa Betoko, Forest Campaign Manager for Greenpeace Africa.
The villagers claim that companies often collude with local authorities to stifle any opposition to their operations. Allegations of serious physical intimidation, violent assault and arbitrary arrest are commonplace.
On a recent visit to Mongala district Greenpeace Africa discovered that, for nearly a decade, Cotrefor logged the area around the Boli South grouping of villages of nearly all of its valuable endangered species, such as Afrormosia and African Mahogany. The logs were then exported to Europe and elsewhere at high market prices.
The community said the company left last year without notice and without completing the construction of a school and a road that they were contractually obliged to. Some local residents who opposed the company’s operations were arbitrarily arrested and fined.
In the locality of Bokweli there has been a long history of conflict between the Sicobois company, and its employees, and the local community. Residents say local authorities collaborate with the company and have turned a blind eye to violent physical assaults and infringements of the forest code that they say have damaged their livelihoods.
"Our trees are felled, exported or sometimes abandoned,” says one villager. “The school is in a disastrous state.. We have only the bark of large trees to make coffins for our dead … We do not know where we are headed with industrial logging. "
Irène Wabiwa Betoko of Greenpeace says: “These testimonies illustrate that more attention needs to be paid to the damaging impacts logging is having on local populations in forested areas. The DRC authorities need to hold these companies accountable and to ensure the new national Community Forestry Decree is properly implemented.”
Greenpeace says the logging sector in the DRC is in a state of organised chaos. Forest governance is weak and corruption is rampant. Some reports estimate that nearly 90% of logging is illegal. Demand for valuable tropical timber, from Europe and China in particular has sent illegal logging spiralling out of control.
Longstanding efforts to introduce a new model of community-based forest management were given a boost this summer when a Community Forestry Decree was passed. However, last month, Greenpeace Africa discovered that many local officials are not aware the law exists and that measures are needed to ensure the benefits of better forest management end up reaching community members.
For people to manage their own land and forests, proper implementation and enforcement of the community forestry law is a basic requirement.
For media enquiries:
Najia Bounaim, Communications Manager, Greenpeace Africa, +27 7993 04743, firstname.lastname@example.org
Notes to editors: