Every couple of days there is a new story of senseless, bloody slaughter of wildlife. In one week, over a dozen rhino were killed for their horns in South Africa alone. Now a report in the New York Times that in just nine years 60% of the forest elephants of Central Africa have been killed because of poachers. There are more tigers in captivity in the United States than in the entire wild. Over 100 MILLION sharks have been killed in one year so people can have soup.
You have to wonder if the President's daughters will ever get to see an entire elephant herd in the wild. Rhinos, Lions and Tigers could all wiped out in the wild in a dozen years (2025).
Four nations are at the heart of the survival of the world's land bound wildlife. Indonesia is critical to a number of species and rainforests that are disappearing at a rapid rate. China, Thailand and Vietnam are the main reasons we are losing the elephants and rhino. As long as people in those nations are allowed to pay top dollar for the Ivory and Rhino horn, the poachers will continue their slaughter.
The ability to save the world's wildlife goes far beyond the means and power of environmental organizations and foundations. The wildlife environmental community has done heroic work in attempting to stem the killing but poachers are using now the most sophisticated weapons.
Now it is time for our President and other world leaders to create the political will, laws and support systems to save species on the verge of extinction. New treaties are urgently needed and the countries of Southeast Asia must be brought in a serious way to the table. Whales were saved through this type of effort and so can other species.
This requires our President to:
-create a wildlife czar to manage a singular effort in the government
-mobilize other world leaders
-get China, Vietnam and Thailand to stop the trade
-mobilize the Departments of State, Interior and Defense to provide valuable resources and planning to save earth's wildlife.
-provide aid and staff to those nations who neither have the resources, staff and sophisticated equipment to stop poachers.
-work with nations in moving animals to more favorable locations and breeding programs.
-create incentives for indigenous people to support the wildlife instead of poaching.
-bring violators of international law before the International Court in the Hague.
-make available radar, helicopters, weapons and drones to take on the poachers.
Time is running out. Soon we will pass the point where the ability to save the elephant, rhino and tiger can be saved from extinction.
What have you done to help?