[EnB] IUCN Red list, CITES Agreement : Meaning, Features, Mock Questions for CSATDevendra Vishwakarma
- What is IUCN?
- Limitation IUCN red-list
- What is CITES?
- How does CITES work?
- Criticism, limitation of CITES
- #1: No police of its own
- #2: Non-Native Species
- #3: Appendix are Counterproductive
- #4: Not Comprehensive
- Mock questions for CSAT
What is IUCN?
- International Union for Conservation of Nature and Natural Resources (IUCN)
- also known as the World Conservation Union.
- The IUCN is the world’s oldest global environmental organization. (WWF in 60s, UNEP in 70s, IPCC in 80s, Kyoto etc in 90s) Observe this Timeline
- IUCN includes both Nations and NGOs.
- HQ=Gland, Switz.
- The IUCN enjoys “observer status” at the United Nations General Assembly.
What is IUCN Red List?
- It is a system of classifying plants, animals etc on basis of their likelihood of extinction.
- This classification contains total 9 groups. Observe following chart.
- Each year thousands of scientists around the world assess or reassess species. The IUCN Red List is subsequently updated. Latest updated list was released @RIO +20 summit.
- This list helps Governments and NGOs prioritize their efforts to save the particular plant, animal etc. For example more money and manpower should be spent on red species compared to orange or green species in the list. And the sale of red species products must be banned under CITES.
- The IUCN Red List has listed 132 species of plants and animals as Critically Endangered from India.
Limitation IUCN redlist
- Red list/ Red Data book contains 9 groups.
- 9th Group is NE (Not Evaluated) species, it also contain thousands of species.
- It is likely that many of these species have become or are in the process of becoming extinct, but not receiving Government/NGO efforts and public funding because they’re in the 9th group.
What is CITES?
- CITES= Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora.
- CITES is an international agreement, brainchild of IUCN, Made in 70s.
- HQ=Geneva, Switzerland. (Secretariat administered by UNEP.)
- CITES aims to stop illicit trade of wildlife.
Why illegal trade of wildlife?
- According to the World Health Organization (WHO), 80 percent of the world’s population uses traditional medicines derived from animals and plants.
- In traditional Chinese and Asian medicine systems the bones, tissues, blood of tigers, bears, elephants, rhinos etc= used to treat arthritis, impotence, Cancer and AIDS(!)
- Rapid Growth of human population without rapid growth of education = increased demand for (stupid) medicines.
- So, animals are hunted not only for their hides but also for their bodyparts, to make those (stupid) medicines.
- Mobiles, Internet, online money transfer, faster modes of transports= good for illegal trade.
- Experts believe this is a multibillion dollar industry just like narcotic drugs trade.
- International cooperation is necessary because illegal wildlife trade involves involves import and export between countries.
How does CITES work?
- CITES has no enforcement authority (i.e. doesn’t have its own police force or militia).
- CITES classifies species into three categories Appendix I, II and III and regulates their trade via cooperation of various nations.
What is Conference of Parties?
- The countries that have ratified the CITES are called “parties”.
- Although CITES is legally binding on the Parties, it does not take the place of national laws. Rather it provides a framework respected by each Party. So These parties have to do two things
- Make laws to regulate import and export of wildlife species.
- Establish licenseing authority for trade of wildlife species and their products.
These Parties meet @regular interval. Such meetings are called Conference of Parties (COP).