Jun 28, 2016. SCI’s Nordic Chapter played a lead role for the hunting community in preparing Norway’s Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species (CITES) delegation for the upcoming 17th Conference of the Parties (CoP) to be held in South Africa in September and October of 2016. Nils-Ole Stubberud represented the SCI Nordic Chapter at a meeting organized by the Norwegian Environment Agency , designed to help Norway’s CITES delegation better understand the issues soon to be addressed by the Parties at the CoP. Because of careful preparation and the support of SCI’s international advocacy team, SCI’s Nordic Chapter served as the “only voice of the hunting community” prepared to speak on the important topics addressed at the meeting.
Meetings of this type are happening in many European countries as the CITES delegations of the members of the European Union (EU) prepare themselves for this opportunity to make decisions about the international trade of wildlife, including hunting trophies. Among other species, the Parties to CITES will consider proposals regarding African lion, African elephant, Western and Eastern Tur, Wood Bison, Rhinoceros, Puma, and Cape Mountain zebra.
The Nordic Chapter’s ability to participate and influence Norway’s CITES delegation could play a pivotal role in the upcoming CoP. The 27 countries of the European Union are expected to vote as a block during the meeting, which means that the position taken by the EU could result in at least 27 votes for or against a position. Meetings being held in individual countries in Europe over the next few weeks will have great influence on the position taken by the EU parties collectively. The meetings are a significant opportunity for the hunting community to demonstrate to the countries of the EU how important sustainable use and community-based conservation strategies are to the fate of the world’s wildlife.
SCI’s European Chapters are taking full advantage of SCI’s knowledge and expertise in demonstrating how hunting is and must continue to be an essential part of wildlife conservation. SCI’s international advocacy, through the teamwork being carried out by SCI’s Hunter Advocacy staff, SCI’s CITES, IADC and GAC Committees and our European Chapter and member leadership, is making a true impact in influencing those with the power to make decisions that will affect hunting and importation throughout the world. SCI Chapters in Europe have additional meetings with EU governments in the next few weeks. Please continue to follow SCI publications for additional reports on their efforts and success.