Zimbabwe has been a crucial part of the fight to conserve many animal species, and ecotourism has helped fund those efforts for decades. But the COVID-19 pandemic has decimated communities dependent on ecotourists for several years, and that has unfortunately led to dramatic declines in essential funding for the conservation of wild animals. Now, Zimbabwe is considering selling a stockpile of elephant ivory and rhino horn that is on hand in the country, largely from animals who have died of natural causes. By selling this ivory, Zimbabwe could jumpstart their conservation efforts after several years of pandemic-related declines. But this process must be thoughtful and intentional, because it is crucial no actors indirectly drive up poachers illegally trading ivory. The UN must step in!
Sign now to demand the UN Convention of Animal Health and Protection work together with Zimbabwe to buy these stockpiles, help fund Zimbabwe's conservation efforts, and then immediately destroy the ivory to stop the illegal trade!
Zimbabwe is home to many charismatic megafauna, from elephants and giraffes to wildebeests and impala. And these very animals are all prone to a number of threats, from habitat loss and destruction to climate change-related impacts such as droughts and the increased likelihood of other natural disasters. This is why conservation funding is essential in the country, and if the UN doesn't act quickly, who knows how many species and individual animals will suffer.
As Zimbabwe pushes to be allowed to sell its ivory stockpile, we must urge the UN to follow the precedent set by other conservationists in the past: to purchase all of the ivory and destroy it. This will prevent the elephant ivory and rhino horns from being circulated in the black market and ensure that the sale is not contributing to any illegal poaching or trading activity. The UN Convention of Animal Health and Protection must act quickly to help this unfortunately cash-strapped nation keep their conservation programs afloat! Sign the petition now if you agree!