Εμφάνιση αναρτήσεων με ετικέτα risk of extinction. Εμφάνιση όλων των αναρτήσεων
Εμφάνιση αναρτήσεων με ετικέτα risk of extinction. Εμφάνιση όλων των αναρτήσεων

Πέμπτη, Οκτωβρίου 16, 2014

Australia targets wildlife extinction

Australia's Environment Minister Greg Hunt has pledged to end the extinction of native mammal species by 2020, with a focus on culprits such as feral cats.

Hunt said Australia had the worst rate of mammal loss in the world and the nation's "greatest failure" in environmental policy was protecting threatened species.

"Our flora and fauna are part of what makes us Australian," he said in a speech late Wednesday.


"I don't want the extinction of species such as the numbat, the quokka, the bilby, on our collective consciences," he said, referring to mammals that are little-known outside Australia compared to other marsupials like the kangaroo.

Hunt said the government had been putting in place a "different approach" to halting the extinction of native wildlife, including the appointment of a Threatened Species Commissioner to spearhead the efforts.

Australia has some 749 species of plants, mammals, birds, frogs, fish, reptiles and other animals listed as threatened under the Environment Protection and Biodiversity Conservation Act, with the numbers rising each year, Hunt said.

Over the past two decades, 53 land-based species moved to a higher threat category, but only 15 moved lower.

A study released earlier this year showed Australia's mammal extinction rate was the highest in the world, with more than 10 percent of species wiped out since Europeans settled the country two centuries ago.

  • Feral cats were identified as the main culprit, although feral foxes were also responsible. Other factors contributing to the extinctions include climate change, fire and habitat destruction.

Australian states and territories have separate threatened species lists and are "struggling with similar problems," Hunt said, adding that legislation is failing to arrest the declines.

"I have set a goal of ending the loss of mammal species by 2020.

"What's more, I want to see improvements in at least 20 of those species between now and then," he said.

The measures would focus on major threats such as those posed by feral cats, which number between 10 to 20 million across Australia and kill countless native animals every night.

  • Cats were first introduced to Australia by British immigrants in the late 1700s as domestic pets. But they went wild and spread across the continent over the next 100 years.

One measure under consideration is the development of a "new, humane bait" called Curiosity, which Hunt described as a "potential game-changer."

Apart from tackling the feral-cat threat, Hunt said the government was committing $2.9 million to the recovery of the endangered Tasmanian devil.

Sources: AFP - globaltimes.cn
16-17/10/14
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Πέμπτη, Μαΐου 22, 2014

New EU initiative to protect biodiversity and fight wildlife crime

European Commission, MEMO, Brussels, 22 May 2014:

B4Life: United for Biodiversity
  1. Why do we need EU Biodiversity for Life? What is the value-added?
EU Biodiversity for Life (B4Life) marks a change in the way the EU provides support to protect biodiversity in developing countries. In the face of the growing global threats to biodiversity, it provides for more resources, strengthened capacity and better coordination with partners.

B4Life is one of EuropeAid’s new flagship initiatives, designed to encourage broad, cross-sector partnerships to tackle major development challenges. For B4Life, this means addressing the related challenges of protecting biodiversity and building sustainable livelihoods in a green economy.
B4Life thus responds both to the growing threat to global ecosystems, including from land use changes, unsustainable use of natural resources, poaching and wildlife crime, pollution and climate change; and to the need of the poorest communities, over 70% of whom live in rural areas and depend directly on ecosystem services for their subsistence.
  1. What are ecosystem services?
Ecosystem services are the benefits people obtain from the wide variety of ecosystems across the Earth. These include provisioning services such as food and water; regulating services such as climate regulation, climate change mitigation, flood and disease control, pollination, and the maintenance of soil fertility; cultural services such as spiritual, recreational and cultural benefits; and supporting services, such as genetic diversity and habitats, that maintain the conditions for life on Earth.
  1. What sort of activities might be eligible for B4Life funding?
B4Life will include projects with biodiversity as their main objective. This will include, for example, projects to support the sustainable management of protected areas, to develop trade in biodiversity-related products for sustainable livelihoods, to reduce deforestation and degradation of mangroves for the protection of coasts and nursery habitats for fish, and to increase monitoring and information sharing to fight wildlife crime.
  1. Which regions/countries are targeted by the initiative?
In line with the EU’s Agenda for Change (its policy blueprint to target its resources where they are most needed and can be the most effective), B4Life will focus on those developing countries most in need and with the greatest potential, by paying particular attention to Least Developed Countries and countries containing “biodiversity hotspots”, the places where ecosystems and their services are the richest but also the most threatened, like the Congo Basin, Madagascar, the West African forests, Tropical Andes, Mesoamerica, Indian Western Ghats, Kalimantan…
  1. What is the timeframe of the initiative?
B4Life will run for the current EU financial period, 2014-2020. During this period, there will be regular calls for project proposals according to the needs identified.
  1. How will it work?
A “B4Life Facility” will be created to manage and coordinate delivery of the initiative. The Facility will provide technical support, enhance communication and coordination towards achieving international biodiversity targets and coherence, promote knowledge exchange for partners and beneficiaries, and enhance the visibility and coherence of the EU biodiversity-related interventions.
  1. What is the ‘Wildlife Crisis Window’?
The wildlife crisis window is a contribution to addressing the wildlife poaching and trafficking crisis throughout the entire chain of wildlife consumption.
The challenge of wild life trafficking is huge and has recently experienced a dramatic acceleration. Illegal wildlife trade of endangered species has a major impact on biodiversity and represents a real threat to national security of many countries, and especially in Africa. Unprecedented poaching levels and sophisticated smuggling capabilities are indicative of organised criminal activity, severely compromising the security of entire communities.
The B4Life wildlife crisis window will scale-up the means allocated to tackle this issue, while addressing both supply- and demand-side, at local, national, regional and international levels. This will include increased protection of priority areas, monitoring and investigation measures and support to organisations specialised in the fight against international trafficking of endangered species.
[europa.eu]
22/5/14
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Πέμπτη, Απριλίου 10, 2014

Environment: Experts meet to discuss how to better fight wildlife trafficking in the EU and globally

wildlife trafficing AFRICA
European Commission, Press release, Brussels, 10 April 2014 -
Following an invitation by the European Commission, 170 experts met today in Brussels to discuss how the EU can better fight wildlife trafficking.
The conference marked the end of a public consultation which was launched on 7 February with a Communication by the Commission (COM (2014) 64 final). The background of the Commission's initiative is the surge in wildlife trafficking globally over the last years which has reached a level that threatens the survival of some endangered species and undermines good governance and sustainable development. Organised crime is significantly involved in this lucrative business, also within the EU.

Environment Commissioner Janez Potočnik who opened the conference said: "The damages caused by wildlife trafficking are enormous, and the efforts we undertake to combat it effectively will have to match the gravity of the situation." He also conveyed a message from the EU Commissioner for Home Affairs Cecilia Malmström: "Wildlife trafficking can be a very profitable business where risks of detection and sanctions are lower than for example drug trafficking. We need to strengthen our fight against this environmental crime."
Discussions focused on how to strengthen enforcement within the EU, how to better fight organised wildlife crime and how to ensure a more strategic diplomatic and development support role for the EU against wildlife crime.
Participants of the conference, which will continue tomorrow with dedicated workshops, came from 26 Member States, and from source and market countries in Africa, Asia and the Americas. Key international organisations such as Europol, Eurojust, Interpol, different part of the UN system and the World Bank were also represented. Civil society was actively participating through more than twenty different organisations. The European Parliament reiterated its call for an EU Action Plan against wildlife trafficking.
It was the first time representatives from all parts of government concerned (foreign affairs, development, environment, home affairs and justice) came together with practitioners from the entire enforcement chain, reflecting the need to develop a more comprehensive approach to what has become a major and complex organized crime problem and a threat to sustainable development.
Experts highlighted a number of problems for enforcement at EU level such as lack of resources, insufficient cooperation between agencies, in some Member States non-deterrent sanction levels and the lack of reliable data to analyse the scope of the problem. It was also discussed how cooperation between Member States in cross-border cases could be further strengthened. Regarding organized crime, the need to also follow the trail of the illegal revenues generated through wildlife trafficking was highlighted.
For better supporting global efforts against wildlife trafficking, experts stressed the need for improved enforcement of existing international rules and the importance of high level diplomatic actions towards countries affected by wildlife trafficking. They also discussed how to maximise international cooperation to investigate and sanction transnational organised networks and how to best integrate wildlife crime among the donor's priorities for development cooperation assistance.
The Commission will analyse carefully all the recommendations provided by the experts in the consultation and at the conference today and will on this basis review existing policies and measures. 
[europa.eu]
10/4/14
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Παρασκευή, Φεβρουαρίου 14, 2014

More than 40 countries sign declaration on fighting with illegal trade in wildlife

LONDON, February 14, (ITAR-TASS/. Officials from 46 countries, including Russia, on Thursday signed an intergovernmental declaration on fighting with illegal trade in wildlife.
The Russian delegation to the conference at Lancaster House where the declaration was signed was led by Natural Resources Minister Vladimir Kirillov.
The document outlines the practical steps towards curbing the illegal trade in wild animals and wildlife artifacts, including rhino horns and elephant tusks. It envisions amendments in the national legislations of signatory countries that will toughen the punishment for poachers, step up cross-border coordination and improve information exchange.

World Wildlife fund says the damage inflicted by poaching annually is estimated at $ 9.83 billion. Illicit production of rhino’s horns jumped up by a factor of 75 in the period of 2007 through 2013.
The horns are a widely used ingredient of traditional Chinese medicine and they surface more and more often on the black markets in Asia.
Apart from this, wildlife artifacts are often purchased by wealthy customers in Asian countries as trophies.
Experts point out the risk of extinction looming over rhinos, elephants and tigers, as tens of thousands of these animals fall victim to poaching every year.
The next conference on prevention of illegal trade in wildlife will be held in Botswana in 2015.
 http://en.itar-tass.com/world/719150?utm_medium=rss20
14/2/14
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