Stop trohy hunting
hunted elephant
Summary

Nature Not Money

GMFER and partners at CITES CoP19.

"When the last tree is cut down, the last fish eaten and the last stream poisoned, you will realize that you cannot eat money."

Native American Quote.

  • GMFER, PWCC and our partners represented the many thousands of global voices standing for wildlife at CITES CoP19 in Panama City, Panama in November 2022.
  • CITES' objective is to permit the trade of endangered species while ensuring the survival of remaining populations; prima facie, the rai·son d'ê·tre for CITES is flawed and represents a quintessential reflection of the dystopian nature of our species' relationship with planet earth.
  • Despite the justifiable cynicism, CITES serves a significant purpose, first, and bluntly, it's the only option available. The only option to mitigate laissez faire trade of earth's last wild voices and the only option to allay corruption and ensure transparency in the complex process that governs the international trade of threatened species and those at the edge of extinction.
  • Our work as advocates for the remains of a once vibrant rainbow is to speak clearly, scientifically and passionately for a living earth; an earth we share, an earth that sustains life.
  • As 2022 reaches its twilight, there is much to be thankful for post CoP19. Yes, elephants remain split-listed and the transfer of specific rhino populations is now permitted on behalf of "in-situ conservation", impacting their listing. Despite the setbacks, new protections for sharks, songbirds, frogs -and more- were established at CoP19.
  • Significantly, a moratorium on the live capture and trade of African elephant populations was achieved. The moratorium stands until the next CoP. Prior to the moratorium, a Transfrontier Africa and GMFER representative presented an intervention, addressing the plenary session debating Agenda Item 66.4. In the course of her intervention, Sergeant Nkateko Mzimba from Transfrontier Africa's Black Mamba Anti-Poaching Unit spoke for Africa's last wild giants;

    "....There is only one home for wild elephants.
    They belong in Africa in their wild habitats..."

How did we contribute?

  • On the opening day of CoP19, GMFER, in collaboration with PWCC presented a Celebration of Wildlife outside the Panama Convention Center. ~200 children, young adults and teachers from surrounding Panamanian Schools joined GMFER, PWCC, our partners and others to celebrate earth's wild wonder. Under the banner of "Nature not Money", these young voices called on Management Authorities to place nature over money, to vote for a living earth. In future collaborations, GMFER hopes to work with the PWCC to establish Appendix 1 for Oophaga vicentei, a poison frog facing significant threats throughout Panama. In turn, PWCC will network with the EU, lobbying on behalf of Appendix1 for all African elephants.
  • Prior to the moratorium imposed on the live capture and trade of all African elephants, a Transfrontier Africa and GMFER representative presented an intervention, addressing the plenary session debating the live capture and trade of African Elephants in the context of Agenda Item 66.4. We thank Iris Ho from the Pan African Sanctuary Alliance for supporting the intervention.
  • The EU's absence of support for a single listing (Appendix 1) for all African elephants and -nominally- *for* the live capture and trade of African elephants continues to pose a threat to the survival of Africana Loxodonta. In general, the EU's chronic alignment with SADC nations is troubling. In response, during CoP19, GMFER established alliances with members of the EU parliament and lobbyists within the EU, supportive of our position. It is our intention to solicit the advice and help of our allies within the EU to ensure the highest level of protection for all African elephants.
  • GMFER's automated tweets targeting the EU and demanding its rejection of *live capture and trade* were flagged by both the trophy hunting lobby and proponents of live capture and trade; subsequently, Facebook prohibited all posts amplifying the tweet storm.

    Click here to find The automated tweets.
  • Side Events
    GMFER's side events were scheduled poorly and not well attended; lessons were learned. Scheduling the events earlier in the day would have better served them. The subjects themselves were highly relevant and well worth pursuing, specifically the topics on Namibian Desert Elephants, Oophaga vicentei, Traditional Chinese Medicine and the WHO. With regard to the latter subject, GMFER's intends to take the TCM issue "on the road", amplifying its significance to biodiversity, zoonoses and spillovers. Our target audience will be governments, CITES, stakeholders and the general public. The world must question the inclusion of Chapter 26 within the WHO's diagnostic compendium, an inclusion that does not exempt the body parts of animals; to characterize the action by the WHO as ironic would be an understatement. Global citizens must demand that donations and subsidies to the WHO be accompanied by accountability and transparency and revisiting Chapter 26, forthwith.
  • The Trophy hunting lobby's presence at CoP19 was strong and palpable. GMFER does not vilify trophy hunters, albeit, we question the ethos that has forced conservation NGOs to take on a weak and defensive position, namely, looking for "alternatives" to trophy hunting. Trophy hunting cannot be the norm; it must be the anomaly. NGOs must offer a position that is the model, the standard. The standard must be one that does not support extractive industries that lean heavily on corrupt colonial aspirations, rather, one that sustains a living and livable earth.

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Take action!
Save earth's last iconic species.


We are a coalition of concerned citizens. We write to you demanding urgent action at CITES-CoP19, scheduled for November 2022 in Panama City, Panama.

The Earth is experiencing its sixth mass-extinction. Functionally indistinguishable, both the legal and illegal trade of wildlife accelerates the demise of imperiled species. Buttressed by a lack of culpability, the networks sponsoring poaching, trafficking, trophy hunting and traditional medicines exploit loopholes and circumvent the law. The unmitigated trade of endangered fauna and flora underwrites degraded habitat, geo-political unrest, depleted wild populations and zoonoses.

Framed in this backdrop, CITES-CoP19 and its member nations must guarantee regulation ensuring the protection of Earth’s last wild inhabitants. Failure to fortify the interface between human activities and the lives of wild animals and plants will set the stage for future pandemics, economic failure, extinction events, and ecological collapse.

Even as economic considerations are factored, nature must be valued over money. #NatureNotMoney.


The Coalition Demanding
Action at CITES CoP19

Dear CITES representative of member nations

Vote on the right side of history. Support the DEMANDS made by the global community to protect iconic species.

GMFER letter

Join the coalition and ACT. Write to the CITES CoP19 Representatives of member nations to vote on the right side of history and support demands made by the global community to protect iconic species.

Read the Full Letter




Seven demands

  1. List all African elephants on Appendix I. Specifically:
    • Support the proposal by Burkina Faso, Equatorial Guinea, Mali, and Senegal to transfer African Elephant populations in Botswana, Namibia, South Africa and Zimbabwe from Appendix II to Appendix I.
    • Oppose Zimbabwe’s proposal concerning elephant populations of Botswana, Namibia, South Africa, and Zimbabwe.
  2. Close all loopholes in Appendix I and Appendix II permitting the live capture and trade of elephants.
  3. Maintain the international ban on rhino horn trade. Specifically:
    • Oppose the proposal by Namibia and Botswana to transfer Namibia’s population of southern white rhinos from Appendix I to Appendix II to facilitate trophy hunting and live animal trade for in-situ conservation purposes.
  4. Move Oophaga vicentei to CITES Appendix I.
  5. Prohibit the import and export of trophies.
  6. Regulate the trade of Traditional Medicines using the body parts of IUCN red-listed animals.
  7. Implement and enforce an e-permit registration system in all participating member-nations.

Take Action!

Act now. Sign on to ban the international trade of iconic species.

387
Supporters Pledge so far

Dear CITES representative of  

I hope this finds you well.

I write, urging you to vote on the right side of history by supporting the following seven demands at CITES' CoP19 in Panama in November:

  1. List all African elephants on Appendix I.
  2. Close all loopholes in Appendix I and Appendix II
    permitting the live capture and trade of elephants.
  3. Maintain the international ban on rhino horn trade.
  4. Move Oophaga vicentei to CITES Appendix I.
  5. Prohibit the import and export of trophies.
  6. Regulate the trade of Traditional Medicines using
    the body parts of IUCN red-listed animals.
  7. Implement and enforce an e-permit registration system
    in all participating member-nations.

Please see the attached letter for further clarification and elaboration on #1.

Enter your details. Your name will be added as a signatory to the 'demand' letter and delivered to CITES and government representatives:

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We recommand to select below representative countries

  • Angola
  • Botswana
  • Brazil
  • Canada
  • China
  • Comoros
  • Colombia
  • Republic of the Congo
  • India
  • Japan
  • Lesotho
  • Madagascar
  • Malawi
  • Mauritius
  • Mozambique
  • Namibia
  • Panama
  • Philippines
  • Seychelles
  • South Africa
  • Sri Lanka
  • Thailand
  • Vietnam
  • Tanzania
  • United Kingdom
  • United States
  • Zambia
  • Zimbabwe

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