Protection of Species is at the Top of the Agenda

Broad Measures have been decided at Conference of CITES

 

Environmental minister Barbara Hendricks takes a positive stock of the CITES conference that was held in Johannesburg (South Africa) from 24th of September until 5th of October. An important boost for projects of the Global Nature Fund emerged: stricter conditions and trade bans shall protect better critically endangered species like elephants or rhinos in the future. Especially Germany was able to maintain the trade embargo on ivory and rhino horn. The increasing trade with lion bones and the export of hunting trophies also will be dammed. Additionally, countries with lion populations have committed themselves to develop a strategy for better protection.

 

Before the conference started, Mrs. Hendricks was visiting GNF projects in Kenia and South Africa, which implement measures to combat poaching in cooperation with the GIZ on behalf of the German Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development (BMZ) and the German Federal Ministry for the Environment, Nature Conservation, Building and Nuclear Safety (BMUB). Her travels first lead her to Somkhanda Game Reserve in the northern part of KwaZulu-Natal province, where the Global Nature Fund and its South African partner organization Wildlands Conservation Trust (WCT) are carrying out projects in favour of wildlife and especially rhino protection. Hendricks next visit to a region near Kenyan Amboseli National Park also was focussing on combat poaching. In this region, the GNF is cooperating with the African Wildlife Foundation (AWF).

 

Within the projects, local communities are an important partner regarding environmental and species conservation. On the one hand, Somkhanda Game Reserve population is benefitting due to the generation of alternative income sources like eco-tourism, and on the other hand, a trustful cooperation between rangers and local communities is strengthened. This underlines the importance of rhino protection and leads to the support of communities.

 

The results and new guidelines elaborated at the CITES conference together with the support of governments, NGOs and communities are a positive signal to sustain populations of endangered and rare species and motivate us to continue fighting against poaching.

 Mrs. Hendricks in the Amboseli Nationalpark, Kenya
 Rangers show the national park to Mrs. Hendricks.
 Mrs. Hendricks under discussion with inhabitants
 The project visit in South Africa
 Boarder crossing workshop for rangers