Deforestation Threatens Critical Ecosystems Across Africa

Campaign Will Help Reforest Kilimanjaro Region

Ecosystems around the world are under assault like never before. The collapse of any ecosystem impacts life around the world–especially when the ecosystem is an anchor in Africa’s greenbelt.

Tanzania wildlife conservation

The greater Kilimanjaro region of Tanzania and Kenya is one of the most threatened ecosystems on the planet. Millions of people and several endangered species depend on the snows of Kilimanjaro for survival. If these ecosystems collapse, it will have a ripple effect across Africa and around the world.

“Save Kilimanjaro” isn’t about a mountain. It’s about life. It’s about hope for our children and grandchildren. It’s a chance for us to push back against the insanity and devastation that’s chipping away at our world.

deforestation Tanzania and Kenya

 

Stakeholders across East Africa have innovative and comprehensive plans that can defend the greater Kilimanjaro region. They plan to save wildlife, capture carbon and reduce deforestation on a massive scale. This investment will benefit the entire planet, while preserving a world treasure. We can all make a difference.

Our first project will help the Mellowswan Foundation Africa-Tanzania defend the greater Kilimanjaro ecosystem with more than 10 million new seedlings, community engagement, wildlife conservation strategies and more. They will educate local stakeholders about sustainable forestry, sustainable agriculture and wildlife management.

Africa climate change solutions

The Foundation will start three large greenhouses and nurseries to produce the seedlings over the next three years. Hundreds of local stakeholders will help plant and care for the trees. 

The Rombo District Council and the Rongai Forest Plantation Authority have donated several acres for the nurseries. The Moshi Municipal Council offered a third nursery for urban reforestation. (Two nurseries border Kilimanjaro National Park.)

Unlike past reforestation efforts in the region, we will focus on local needs and long-term sustainability. The seedlings are indigenous species that can help restore and protect the integrity of the ecosystem, while helping rural communities thrive as stewards of the land.

reforest Tanzania

We will plant trees for sustainable timber, rainfall management, groundwater conservation, food, wildlife habitat and other regional needs. We will include an urban forestry program that will help “street kids” generate food and income. The urban canopy can help capture pollutants and water runoff, while making the cities more resilient and energy efficient.

Tanzania has already lost more than half of its elephants to poachers over the past decade. Other large mammals are on the same path. They could be wiped out entirely in just five or six years. Adding to the crisis, there has been loss of wildlife habitat and biodiversity as a result of fragmentation and loss of critical ecosystem linkages and over-exploitation of the natural habitats. This loss of habitat brings humans and wildlife into more and more conflict over food, water and space–which means more bloodshed.

lion conservation Africa

Conservationists are demanding more efforts to protect endangered species now. In a letter published July 27, 2016 in the journal BioScience, 43 wildlife conservationists warn that elephants, lions, rhinos, gorillas and many other species will become extinct without urgent intervention, which must include habitat conservation, community engagement and more.

“We will soon be writing obituaries for species as they vanish from the planet,” said authors from Wildlife Conservation Society, Zoological Society of London, Panthera and many others. Extinction is a slippery slope.

We need sponsors, donors, volunteers and in-kind donations. Please Help Save Kilimanjaro and beyond https://www.gofundme.com/SaveKilimanjaro

Asante’ sana.

deforestation and climate change

climate change and deforestation

Sacred Seedlings is a global initiative to support forest conservation, reforestation, urban forestry, sustainable agriculture and wildlife conservation. Sustainable land management and land use are critical to the survival of entire ecosystems. Sacred Seedlings is a U.S.-based program that supports the vision of local stakeholders. We have projects ready across Africa. We seek additional projects elsewhere around the world. We also seek volunteers, sponsors and donors of cash and in-kind support. Write to Gary Chandler for more information gary@crossbow1.com

Criminals, Corruption And Tanzania’s Vanishing Elephants

East Africa Raided For Its Ivory

By Environmental Investigation Agency

The survival of African elephants hangs in the balance as a surge in poaching consumes the continent. Both sub-species of African elephants, the forest elephant and the savanna elephant, are facing precipitous population declines and a real threat of extermination. While more than 1.3 million elephants roamed Africa in 1979, today the population is estimated to be as low as 419,000.

elephant conservation Tanzania

In 2011 alone, 25,000 African elephants were reportedly killed, with 22,000 recorded in 2012. Such figures are estimates and the true scale of the carnage is likely to be worse. For example, other estimates put the number of elephants killed in 2011 at 40,000. Escalating poaching now poses a direct threat to the survival of elephant populations as killing rates exceed birth rates, raising fears of virtual extinction in the next decade.

This level of killing has not been seen since the 1980s, when a wave of elephant poaching spread across Africa prompting the adoption of a ban on international commercial trade in ivory in 1989 under the UN Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora (CITES) by listing African elephants on CITES Appendix I. Although the ban relieved the pressure and key elephant populations began recovering, it was soon undermined.

elephant conservation Africa

In 1997, the elephant populations of Botswana, Namibia and Zimbabwe were downlisted to CITES Appendix II and an “experimental” sale of nearly 50 tons of ivory from these African countries to Japan occurred in April 1999. This was followed by a further sale of
102 tons of ivory from Botswana, Namibia, South Africa and Zimbabwe to China and Japan in late 2008. Further, CITES Parties are currently discussing a “decision-making mechanism for future trade in ivory” that could potentially enable regular trade in ivory. This is taking place despite an ongoing elephant poaching crisis in Africa.

Currently, two CITES-mandated systems exist to monitor levels of poaching and illicit trade in ivory – the Monitoring the Illegal Killing of Elephants (MIKE) system and the Elephant Trade Information System (ETIS). Both document alarming increases, especially
since 2006 and with a major surge from 2011. In 2011, the MIKE system recorded the highest poaching level since systematic monitoring began a decade earlier. Figures showed 7.4 percent of elephant populations at the monitoring sites killed illegally, a total of 17,000 elephants compared with 11,500 in 2010. A scientific study published in August 2014 analyzed data collected by MIKE and found that during the past decade, the proportion of
illegally killed elephants has climbed from 25 percent to 60-70 percent.

The Proportion of Illegally Killed Elephants (PIKE) index measures the volume of  elephant carcasses due to illegal killing. The index ranges from 0.0 showing no illegal killing to 1.0, where all carcasses were illegally killed. The highest poaching rate is found in
Central Africa, with a PIKE level of 0.9. This is confirmed by studies revealing that forest elephants in central Africa have declined by over 65 percent between 2002-13.9 In East Africa, the PIKE level has tripled from 0.2 to 0.6 between 2006-11. For example, more
than 60 percent of elephant carcasses found at MIKE monitoring sites in Kenya had been illegally killed.

illegal ivory trade and elephant extinction

Unsurprisingly, data showing increased poaching levels is mirrored by surging illicit trade in ivory. According to ETIS figures, the illegal ivory trade has grown three-fold since 1998. The surge has been especially pronounced since the period 2011-13, with record levels of
ivory (116 tons) seized during this time. ETIS data also reveals the emergence of
East Africa as the biggest source region of illegal ivory, especially Kenya and Tanzania. Between 2009-11, these two countries were the exporters of 16 out of 34 large scale ivory seizures (weighing 500kg or more) recorded worldwide, amounting to 35 tons. In total, …

Read More At: http://eia-international.org/vanishing-point-criminality-corruption-and-the-devastation-of-tanzanias-elephants

climate change and deforestation

Sacred Seedlings is a global initiative to support forest conservation, reforestation, urban forestry, sustainable agriculture and wildlife conservation. Sustainable land management and land use are critical to the survival of entire ecosystems. Sacred Seedlings is a U.S.-based program that supports the vision of local stakeholders. We have projects ready across Africa. We seek additional projects elsewhere around the world. We also seek volunteers, sponsors and donors of cash and in-kind support. Write to Gary Chandler for more information gary@crossbow1.com

A Third Of Illegal Ivory Seized In Asia From Tanzania

Elephant Extinction Predicted In East Africa

Apollo Kwilabya has loved the outdoors ever since he was a young boy, hunting small animals with his father in Tanzania’s southern highlands. It is also the reason why he signed up as a ranger at Selous Game Reserve, where although he earned a modest $200 dollars a month, he could spend most of his time on patrol in one of the largest wildlife reserves in the world. 

But his dream job quickly turned into a nightmare. He was rarely paid on time, and his fellow rangers were killed off one-by-one. One was killed by a propeller when a hippo overturned a patrol boat, another was bitten by a green mamba, a third was out fishing when he was grabbed by a huge crocodile, another was trampled by an elephant, while the fifth fell to the deadliest enemy–the poacher.

elephant conservation Tanzania

“I thank God that I’m alive,” said Kwilabya, who quit his job after three years and moved to Dar es Salaam to become a tour guide. “That day we were chasing the poachers, and they would just shoot and run, shoot and run. Everyone was shooting. It’s like a war.”
This particular poacher was hunting elephant for ivory and, like most, was from one of the small, poor communities that border the park. But Kwilabya said the poachers are clearly well-equipped and funded, brandishing brand-new automatic rifles that put the rangers’ firepower to shame.

If it is a war, the conservationists are losing. A third of all illegal ivory seized in Asia comes from Tanzania, and the safari tourism destination has lost over half of its elephants in the last five years, according to the Tanzanian Elephant Protection Society (TEPS). There are 60,000 left but, if poaching continues unabated, Tanzania may see all of its elephants eradicated by the year 2020. 

The problem is particularly pronounced in the Selous Game Reserve, which was made a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 1982 when more than 100,000 elephants roamed the area. By 1989 the elephant population had plunged to 30,000. Benson Kibonde has spent over 30 years protecting the park, and was Selous’ Chief Warden from 1992 to 2008. During his tenure, the elephant population more than doubled, climbing back up to 70,000, thanks also in part to an international ban on the sale of ivory.

elephant conservation Africa

But something went seriously wrong after Kibonde left Selous to become an instructor at Pasiansi Wildlife Training Institute. Pay checks went unpaid for months at a time, infrastructure fell into disrepair and morale dropped, according to Kwilabya and other rangers. The elephant population also plummeted to just 13,000 animals.

Kibonde was called out of retirement, and has been back in charge of Selous since 2012.
“Based on the poachers we’ve been arresting recently, I can assure you that they are as local as I used to know in the past,” he told AFP in Dar-es-Salaam, Tanzania’s commercial capital. “So it’s still traditional. And I think we can stop them using traditional means.”
The technique that Kibonde employed since the 1990s — and the one he plans to continue now — simply involves ensuring that rangers are everywhere. He does this by giving the scouts a map, GPS, rifle, backpack and a small tent, and sending them off on random patrols.

illegal ivory trade and elephant extinction

Source: http://www.arabnews.com/news/579871

climate change and deforestation

Sacred Seedlings is a global initiative to support forest conservation, reforestation, urban forestry, carbon capture, sustainable agriculture and wildlife conservation. Sustainable land management and land use are critical to the survival of entire ecosystems.

Sacred Seedlings is a U.S.-based program that supports the vision of local stakeholders. We have projects ready across Africa. We seek additional projects elsewhere around the world. We also seek volunteers, sponsors and donors of cash and in-kind support. Write to Gary Chandler for more information gary@crossbow1.com

Wildlife Conservation Fund Created In Tanzania

Endangered Species and Endangered Communities

Dar es Salaam. The government has created a basket fund for wildlife conservation to be coordinated by the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP).

A memorandum of understanding (MoU) for the creation of the fund to be known as Tanzania Wildlife Conservation Basket Fund was signed in Dar es Salaam by the Minister for Natural Resources and Tourism, Mr Lazaro Nyalandu and the UNDP Country Director for Tanzania, Mr Phillippe Poinsot at the end of a two-day conference which addressed the elephant poaching crisis in the country over the weekend.

lion conservation Africa

The signing of the MoU was witnessed by the Prime Minister, Mr Mizengo Pinda, the UNDP Administrator, Ms Helen Clark, top diplomats accredited to Tanzania and stakeholders in wildlife conservation from across the world.

“This fund will create the most credible mechanism upon which development partners and other stakeholders will be able to support wildlife conservation efforts,” Mr Nyalandu told The Citizen in an interview shortly of the signing of the MoU.

The minister added: “The fund will be transparent and it will be implemented by an independent board that will oversee wildlife conservation projects to be approved by the wildlife strategic plan.”

He said development partners will be contributing to the fund.

Ms Clark said UNDP was prepared to support the government of Tanzania at its request to assess the size of its ivory stockpile, and, with government, to bring together the appropriate parties to manage that process.

“We are also committed to playing a convening role in the creation of an inter-ministerial unit to enhance co-ordination and co-operation within government on addressing wildlife crime,” she said.

elephant poaching Africa

The UNDP administrator added that her organization was also willing to assist in the development of the appropriate mechanisms and establishment of a basket fund to support the government’s lead role in wildlife conservation. She said the poaching crisis posed development, environmental and security challenges. She said the social and economic benefits of conservation of wildlife in Tanzania’s parks and reserves should be going to local communities and the nation.

Community-based tourism, jobs in wildlife and park management, and government revenue-sharing from tourism can all help reduce poverty and inequality, including for women, youth, and marginalised groups, said Ms Clark.

She said: “The illegal trade, however, benefits lawbreakers who are often not from the local community, with the big profits flowing to sinister criminal syndicates.”

The two-day conference on Stopping Wildlife Crime and Advancing Wildlife Conservation: A Call to Action, agreed on a number of issues, including the establishment of the Tanzania Wildlife Authority (TAWA) to streamline wildlife management in wildlife areas outside core protected areas.

The conference also agreed on the establishment of a code of conduct and enforcement board to regulate the professional conduct of rangers and expansion of the current anti-poaching task force to an inter-ministerial task force for wildlife management in the country.

illegal ivory trade and elephant extinction

It also agreed on the establishment of an ivory registry for record keeping and secure storage of ivory stockpiles and improvement of co-ordination and governance of community engagement in wildlife conservation.

At the same time, countries across the world, including China, Germany, Norway, Japan, the United Kingdom, the United States and the European Union, over the weekend pledged to support Tanzania in the fight against poaching and illicit trade in wildlife.

The countries expressed their support during the conference with the Chinese ambassador to Tanzania, Lu Youqing, saying Tanzania needed support because the country has worked hard in enhancing wildlife protection, including elephants. The Chinese envoy said Tanzania should strengthen and enforce wildlife laws in order to mete out heavy punishment for poachers.

“In China we have toughened laws on wildlife trafficking and this is working very positively in dealing with the offenders,” Lu told the conference which ended on Saturday.

Lu said China will work hand in hand with the international community towards the protection and conservation of wildlife.

The German ambassador to Tanzania, Hans Koeppel, paid tribute to the government of Tanzania for its plans to employ over 900 game rangers and the establishment of an independent wildlife authority. However, he said there was need for Tanzanian authorities to review their wildlife policies to allow local communities to fully participate in wildlife conservation.

“Game rangers and guns alone will not end poaching. There is need to involve communities,” said the German envoy.

The Japanese ambassador to Tanzania, Kazuyoshi Matsunaga, said Tanzania needed full backing in its anti-poaching crusade because poaching and illegal trafficking in wildlife was a threat to international security.

Mr Nyalandu thanked the international community for showing their commitment towards helping Tanzania to end poaching which is alarmingly high.

Africa wildlife conservation

“Your commitment is more than writing a cheque. What we are looking at is beyond money,” the minister said.

The conference was held against the backdrop of reports of killings of elephants in Tanzania’s game reserves and national parks. On Friday, Nyalandu said the government of Tanzania will employ 435 of the new game scouts in May 2014 and 500 by July 2014. He said apart from recruiting the 935 game wardens the government of Tanzania will acquire two patrol helicopters to boost the fight against poachers.

According to the Tanzania Elephant Protection Society, around 30 elephants are killed for their ivory every day, that is, around 11,000 each year.

Source: http://www.thecitizen.co.tz/News/Govt–UNDP-establish-fund-/-/1840392/2311644/-/item/2/-/120mrb8/-/index.html

climate change and deforestation

Sacred Seedlings is a global initiative to support forest conservation, reforestation, urban forestry, carbon capture, sustainable agriculture and wildlife conservation. Sustainable land management and land use are critical to the survival of entire ecosystems.

Sacred Seedlings is a U.S.-based program that supports the vision of local stakeholders. We have projects ready across Africa. We seek additional projects elsewhere around the world. We also seek volunteers, sponsors and donors of cash and in-kind support. Write to Gary Chandler for more information gary@crossbow1.com

Tanzania Faces Sanctions Over Wildlife Poaching

Tanzania A Major Source Of Ivory, Rhino Horn

The United Nations could slap sanctions on Tanzania and other African countries for failing to end poaching, which is threatening to wipe out the last elephants and rhinos. Tanzania could be targeted because it is currently considered a transit country in ivory smuggling, according to reports from the UN. Others countries considered to be transit routes include Kenya, Malaysia and Vietnam.

The UN and conservationists want a twin-pronged approach, targeting both producers of ivory in Africa – including countries such as Gabon, Kenya, Zambia, Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC), Central African Republic (CAR) and Uganda – and consumer countries such as China and Thailand.

wildlife conservation and deforestation

“It’s a simmering issue,” said a UN diplomat, adding that two international conferences to address the subject were held in Botswana and France in December.

The UN Security Council has already moved to impose sanctions on ivory hunters and traffickers in the DRC and CAR. Two resolutions adopted by the council last week stated that the trade in illegal wildlife was fueling conflicts in the region and bankrolling organised crime. Under the resolutions, the council can impose sanctions, such as freezing assets or restricting travel, on any individual found to be involved in wildlife trafficking. The resolutions were primarily designed to target a number of armed rebel groups operating in eastern DRC.

forest elephants Arabuko Sokoke Kenya

But some UN members and conservationists urged the council at its meeting last week to impose trade sanctions on countries that have failed to stop ivory trafficking. Some observers say Tanzania is both a transit country and producer of ivory.

Poaching has reached alarming levels in the country, and a census conducted late last year in the Selous-Mikumi and Ruaha-Rungwa ecosystems revealed a sharp decline in elephant numbers. It put the current number of elephants in the Selous-Mikumi ecosystem at 13,084, which is a 66 percent drop from the 38,975 animals counted in 2009. The elephant population in Ruaha-Ruangwa dropped by 35 percent from 31,625 to 20,090 during the period. Statistics from previous censuses show that there were 109,419 elephants in Selous-Mikumi in 1976, but the number crashed to 22,208 in 1991 following a wave of poaching between 1984 and 1989.

The launch of the countrywide Operesheni Uhai (operation life) in 1990 led to a rapid increase in elephant numbers in Selous-Mikumi, where 70,406 animals were counted in 2006 before a sharp decrease left only 13,084 pachyderms roaming the two sanctuaries.

Alarmed at the decline, the government last year launched Operesheni Tokomeza (operation eradicate) that was aimed at stamping out poaching in national parks, game reserves and other protected areas. The operation was, however, suspended in November amid claims of widespread human rights abuses, leading to the removal of four Cabinet ministers.

elephant conservation Tanzania

The government said yesterday that it would establish an anti-poaching unit as part of efforts to protect wildlife. Speaking at a roundtable discussion in Dar es Salaam, Natural Resources and Tourism minister Lazaro Nyalandu said the plan would be jointly implemented with donors and coordinated by the United Nations Development Programme.

“The involvement of donors is meant to ensure transparency and efficiency,” Mr. Nyalandu said, adding that the development partners would fund the unit during the first four years of its existence.

The minister said the country was grappling with an acute shortage of game wardens.

“We need to recruit 3,767 new wardens to bridge the shortfall. We currently have only 1,088 wardens, which is a very small number,” he said.

The German Embassy charge d’affaires, Mr Hans Koppel, said plans to set up an anti-poaching unit was a positive development.

“This is a great idea because we need to preserve wildlife. The establishment of this unit will go a long way in fighting poaching. The Germany government is willing to help…that’s why we are here,” he said.

Mr. Koppel said his country in 2012 provided Tanzania with grants totaling 31.5 million euros (Sh70 billion) that were channelled into various areas, including anti-poaching activities. The United Kingdom High Commissioner, Ms. Diana Melrose, said researchers and scientists should find an alternative to ivory.

Africa wildlife conservation

“It’s high time scientists came up with an alternative to ivory… if we want to destroy the market then we need to find another material to replace ivory,” she said.

Ms. Melrose added that the UK had established a special fund to cater for wildlife issues and advised the government to forward proposals that would enable it to access the funds. She urged developed countries to buy Tanzania’s ivory stockpiles, currently valued at $60 million (Sh96 billion), and destroy them. Tanzania could then use the money it would earn to fund anti-poaching activities.

European Union Ambassador Filiberto Sebregondi said the envisaged unit should work closely with security organs to ensure it succeeds in its endeavour.

Source: http://www.theeastafrican.co.ke/news/Dar-faces-sanctions-over-poaching-spree/-/2558/2192838/-/13xpmrpz/-/index.html

climate change and deforestation

Sacred Seedlings is a global initiative to support forest conservation, reforestation, urban forestry, carbon capture, sustainable agriculture and wildlife conservation. Sustainable land management and land use are critical to the survival of entire ecosystems.

Sacred Seedlings is a U.S.-based program that supports the vision of local stakeholders. We have projects ready across Africa. We seek additional projects elsewhere around the world. We also seek volunteers, sponsors and donors of cash and in-kind support. Write to Gary Chandler for more information gary@crossbow1.com

Tanzania Unveils Priorities To Fight Wildlife Poaching

Tanzania’s Vanishing Biodiversity

By Tanzania Minister for Natural Resources and Tourism, Hon. Lazaro S. Nyalandu

Lazaro Nyalandu Tanzania wildlife

I share with you the current priorities of the Government of the United Republic of Tanzania as we set out to scale up our efforts to combat poaching and illegal wildlife trade, particularly illicit ivory trafficking. We invite you today to collaborate with us in discussing the priorities as we develop a strategy to combat poaching and address illegal wildlife trafficking—particularly of our threatened elephant populations.

Scientific evidence shows that poaching and illegal ivory trafficking has caused a significant decline in elephant populations in Tanzania. Survival of the species is now at risk, endangering a priceless asset to humanity, the integrity of Tanzania’s biodiversity and our national economy. It is clear to us all that more needs to be done and the time to act is now.

The Tanzanian Government is, therefore, setting out to address three interrelated challenges and opportunities: (1) Biodiversity conservation; (2) Economic development; and (3) National security.

wildlife conservation and deforestation

Biodiversity: Tanzania Wildlife Research Institute (TAWIRI) has estimated that elephants may become extinct within seven years, if the current trend of decline continues. In addition, since the elephant is a keystone species of the African savannah ecosystem, effects on these habitats and all other savannah species are expected to be devastating as the natural habitat management effect of elephants is no longer present.

reforestation and climate change

Economic development: Elephants and rhinos are iconic mammals of Africa and important tourist attractions. Their absence would severely impact Tanzania’s tourism sector. Without these charismatic mega-fauna the draw for tourists will be diminished. This would not only damage the national economy but would also directly impact the development of rural communities, leading to increasing poverty and preventing Tanzania’s achievement of national priorities such as its Vision 2025 and the Millennium Development Goals as well as post 2015 development priorities.

Illegal wildlife trade increases poverty since the true value of wildlife products is taken away from local communities and, most often, out of the country. In effect, the illegal wildlife trade is privatizing for illicit gain from a public good. Illegal wildlife trade is a redirection of wildlife-based benefits from thousands of rural households dependent on natural resources towards a few powerful criminals.

wildlife conservation Africa

National Security: Poaching and illegal wildlife trafficking put national security at risk. Unfortunately, the middlemen involved in the trafficking of wildlife products are becoming more skilled at disguising their goods and avoiding arrests at countries’ exit and entry points. There is enormous urgency to combat the national security aspect of the ivory trade and slaughter of elephants at both national and international levels. The Tanzanian Government recognizes the need for a mix of short-term actions and long-term solutions to end poaching and illegal trafficking of wildlife. A draft strategy has three interrelated components – each detailing several strategic measures to address these issues.

The three priority components are:
• Providing national capacity for intelligence-led, highly coordinated law enforcement. This will include creation of a dedicated wildlife crime unit, better controls at ports and supporting the much needed infrastructure development in protected areas;
• Improving rural livelihoods through enhanced community-based management of natural resources, including on-going support to our WMA programme;
• Awareness raising and demand reduction in Tanzania and in collaboration with supply, transit and destination countries to help change attitudes towards wildlife crime and build international support to combat illegal wildlife trafficking.

wildlife conservation Tanzania

First Priority 

• Boost and align our intelligence capabilities in the wildlife sector and better link with our national systems and response mechanisms, including the National and Transnational Serious Crimes Unit. To that end our strategy includes the creation of a Wildlife Crime Unit housed in my Ministry but effectively linked to all other arms of government.
• National Wildlife Crime Unit overseen by a proposed Ministerial Committee on Wildlife Security that will allow a linkage to other related Ministries, in order to unite the wildlife and security sectors in addressing wildlife trafficking. The Unit will be composed of expert members from the Wildlife Division, TANAPA and potentially other partners under this Ministry. The Unit will be supported by technical experts from the National and Transnational Serious Crimes Unit, including public prosecutions, police and customs, immigration and intelligence agencies. It will contain a separate intelligence section for the management of human and signals intelligence. Advanced training will need to be provided to Unit members.

This will be an independent specialist unit and, where necessary, will call upon and liaise with the Wildlife Division and TANAPA’s and NCAA’s anti-poaching units as well as the CITES’s ivory and rhino task force, and upon INTERPOL representatives, amongst others.

A Memorandum of Understanding between the Ministry of Natural Resources and the Ministry of Home Affairs will allow for the unit to access specialist support from the National and Transnational Serious Crimes Unit and, therefore, benefit from the skills, intelligence and law enforcement expertise of the police, CID, intelligence, customs, immigration departments and military forces whenever necessary. The Unit will be based within the Ministry. It will manage seven ecosystem-level Tasking and Coordination Groups in the following ecosystem hotspots: Serengeti, Tarangire, Moyowosi, Ruaha, Rungwa, Katavi and Selous. Each Tasking and Coordination Group will be made up of a specialist operational team and will be designed to grow and contract according to the scale of a particular task, calling on resources from other groups and the wildlife crime unit as required.

lion conservation Africa

Second Priority

• Strengthen law enforcement.

To significantly strengthen technical capacities to combat poaching on the ground for our rangers, police, customs and immigration officials. Effective law enforcement will require stronger efforts to tackle poaching in protected areas as well as unprotected areas. The Government will scale up capacities to intercept criminals in transit, on major highways and at export points along highways as well as at airports and seaports. These efforts will require manpower, training, technology, better monitoring intelligence, transport and other tools.

At protected areas level efforts will focus on increased use of technology and ranger training. Park and Reserve Management and rangers and wardens in five parks and five reserves will be resourced for anti-poaching activities through utilization of new technical equipment such as thermal imagery night vision equipment, remote recording devices, vehicle-repeaters and GPS devices for greater effectiveness per unit effort. With the use of technology maximized, human labour will be minimized. In addition, rangers and wardens will be better supported through equipment. Bulletproof vests are also needed.
• Security plans will be formulated for each protected area, based on those recently formulated for Serengeti and Selous; rangers and wardens will be prepared for their implementation through intensive training in criminal tracking, smuggling techniques, and the gathering, handling and transfer of evidence. Linkages will be formed with the Wildlife Crime Unit for efficient transfer of data to intelligence leaders.

Third Priority

• Container Control Programme, which will vastly increase capacity for efficient and thorough monitoring of export containers at air/sea ports.

illegal ivory trade and elephant extinction

A comprehensive training program will be conducted for customs staff, including in aspects of risk analysis, cargo inspection, information exchange and post-seizure investigations. Port control units will be established at container terminals, with liaison points with the Wildlife Crime Unit and our existing National and Transnational Serious Crimes Unit. Each unit will be equipped to target high-risk containers, increasing the efficiency of searches. In addition, customs departments should be equipped with and trained in the use of high-tech scanning equipment and trained sniffer dogs and will be given additional staff members in order to further increase the rate of detection of smuggled goods. Selected staff can act as clandestine monitors, with recording devices, to support intelligence gathering. Training will also be given on the application of roadblocks along major highways and known smuggling routes.

In addition, an independent communications system needs to be emplaced for coordination between Customs and Wildlife Division via the Wildlife Crime Unit in order to enable targeted interceptions of identified suspects.

Fourth Priority 

• Deterrence through higher convictions success rate in poaching and trafficking crimes.

Knowledge of wildlife laws, offenses and penalties is low in the justice sector, which weakens cases and reduces the likelihood of suitable penalties. In addition, if a case results in a successful conviction, the low penalties given for wildlife crimes does little to deter a poacher or trafficker who may gain an income from ivory trade many times the value of the penalty. Therefore, intensive training will be provided to state attorneys and district magistrates, depending on the findings of a national assessment, on the following: wildlife laws, their relevance to national security and economy, and, therefore, significance of wildlife crimes. Each stage of the prosecution process will be strengthened: how to prepare for trial, minimum requirements for a file in terms of quality of evidence, presentation and handling of evidence exhibits, with standard operating procedure established for case management and rapid referral through departments. Judiciary toolkits, checklists and guidelines will be introduced and implemented for easy referral during operations.

Corruption within the judiciary will also be addressed, through sensitization of magistrates for honest and fair judgments—including passing on the understanding that killing wildlife is a serious crime; employment of independent case monitors and court observers, case analysis and publication; the utilization of electronic transcription system in courts so that records cannot be changed. Available anti-corruption tools will be utilized as necessary.

lion conservation Africa

Long-Term Solutions 

• These include addressing poverty and sustainable livelihoods at the local level in the vicinity of protected areas. Prosperity, alternatives to illegal activities and development will be an important part of the long-term solutions. This will likely include more effective collaboration between Government, local communities, NGOs and the private sector – especially the tourism sector. On-going support to wildlife management areas must be a crucial part of those long-terms solution—people must benefit from wildlife, if it is to survive.
• Improved international cooperation is also crucial. This includes wildlife management and anti-poaching, anti-trafficking cooperation with our neighbours, expanded cooperation with INTERPOL, and deeper diplomatic cooperation with ivory and rhino horn consumer states. Tanzania and China have already begun to demonstrate this in our bilateral relationships but, there is more to be done yet. We are also aware that much needs to be done in awareness raising at home and abroad about the threats to the nation and to our global heritage from poaching and ivory trafficking, including better awareness of the nature and costs of ivory sources in consumer countries. Our draft strategy, therefore, has a strong awareness raising and demand reduction component. Details of our planned approaches in both the short- and long-term are also spelled out in the draft strategy, which we intend to circulate for your input and feedback in the near future.

For more information: http://www.ippmedia.com/frontend/?l=64701

climate change and deforestation

Sacred Seedlings is a global initiative to support forest conservation, reforestation, urban forestry, carbon capture, sustainable agriculture and wildlife conservation. Sustainable land management and land use are critical to the survival of entire ecosystems.

Sacred Seedlings is a U.S.-based program that supports the vision of local stakeholders. We have projects ready across Africa. We seek additional projects elsewhere around the world. We also seek volunteers, sponsors and donors of cash and in-kind support. Write to Gary Chandler for more information gary@crossbow1.com

Wildlife and Forest Conservation Emphasized In Arusha Manifesto

Conservation Critical To Africa’s Future

More than 50 years ago the first President of Tanzania, Mwalimu Julius K. Nyerere, recognized the integral part that wildlife plays in the country. In September 1961, at a symposium on the Conservation of Nature and Natural Resources, he gave a speech that has become known as the Arusha Manifesto:

Arusha manifesto

“The survival of our wildlife is a matter of grave concern to all of us in Africa. These wild creatures amid the wild places they inhabit are not only important as a source of wonder and inspiration, but are an integral part of our natural resources and our future livelihood and wellbeing.

In accepting the trusteeship of our wildlife we solemnly declare that we will do everything in our power to make sure that our children’s grand-children will be able to enjoy this rich and precious inheritance.

The conservation of wildlife and wild places calls for specialist knowledge, trained manpower, and money, and we look to other nations to cooperate with us in this important task – the success or failure of which not only affects the continent of Africa but the rest of the world as well.”

wildlife conservation Africa

The situation was crystal clear to local leaders 50 years ago and it’s haunting to read how prophetic Tanzania’s manifesto was in the midst of the regional crisis today. Of course, it’s not just about wildlife. It’s not just about Africa. It’s about biodiversity and sustainability of the human race. Nyerere spoke for the world.

We don’t have time to waste. Momentum is building against the web of life and we have an unprecedented chance to draw a line in the dirt in Africa. Some courageous visionaries in Kenya and Tanzania have stepped up with comprehensive plans that can make a difference. With your help, they are ready to make a difference that can span the globe in Burundi, Kenya, Rwanda, Tanzania, Uganda and beyond.

wildlife conservation and deforestation

 

To learn more, please click on the link on the menu bar “East Africa Plan.” If you can, please help us network to find foundations, corporations and NGOs who are ready to fund these projects and others in Africa.

These projects have all been developed by local NGOs in collaboration with government, technical experts and community members. They are determined to make a difference for their own survival and that of future generations. Please take a look. They have done a very impressive job of designing comprehensive, sustainable solutions that can help us tackle some of the planet’s most pressing problems.

reforestation and climate change solution

Sacred Seedlings is a global initiative to support forest conservation, reforestation, urban forestry, carbon capture, sustainable agriculture and wildlife conservation. Sustainable land management and land use are critical to the survival of entire ecosystems.

Sacred Seedlings is a U.S.-based program that supports the vision of local stakeholders. We have projects ready across Africa. We seek additional projects elsewhere around the world. We also seek volunteers, sponsors and donors of cash and in-kind support. Write to Gary Chandler for more information gary@crossbow1.com

Tanzania Planning More Game Sanctuaries

Habitat Conservation Critical To Wildlife Conservation

Tanzania‘s plan to increase game reserves from 11 to 32 currently and having 32 percent of the country under protected forest cover has been lauded. At a meeting for scientists, environmentalists and media in Dar es Salaam on Tuesday, participants argued that many countries were already experiencing the negative effects of climate change and the situation is expected to worsen as impending calamities will affect agriculture, infrastructure and health.

lion conservation Africa

The Director of Environment in Vice President’s Office, Dr. Julius Ningu, said that policies were in place to counter changes in the frequency and severity of climate events, such as heat waves, droughts, floods and storms.

“This is aimed at ensuring climate change does not affect the country’s development efforts and cause shifts in other things,” he said. He was speaking at the meeting organized by Tanzania science journalists Association at Commission for Science and Technology.

He said that climate change situation can compromise any country’s ability to meet its own development objectives and the Millennium Development Goals. He noted that reducing carbon emissions can also combat climate change. He added that policies on combating climate change adaptation should be drafted and adopted by more civil societies and nations.

Africa wildlife conservation

Good policies should be implemented to solve the current problems of climate change whose impacts are expected to hit Africa the most, he said. He added that they were laying ground work to both mitigate and adapt to the phenomenon. “We have good laws to protect the environment and environmental action plans at various levels,” he said.

wildlife conservation and deforestation

Source: http://allafrica.com/stories/201312120227.html

climate change and deforestation

Sacred Seedlings is a global initiative to support forest conservation, reforestation, urban forestry, carbon capture, sustainable agriculture and wildlife conservation. Sustainable land management and land use are critical to the survival of entire ecosystems.

Sacred Seedlings is a U.S.-based program that supports the vision of local stakeholders. We have projects ready across Africa. We seek additional projects elsewhere around the world. We also seek volunteers, sponsors and donors of cash and in-kind support. Write to Gary Chandler for more information gary@crossbow1.com