US Promises $90 Million to Fight Illegal Wildlife Trade
Representatives from the United States and more than 70 countries met in London last week to discuss the illegal wildlife trade. The delegates promised to work together to protect endangered animals.
Experts estimate that the trade in endangered wildlife, including elephant tusks, rhinoceros horns and tiger bones, is worth $17 billion a year. Now, hundreds of kinds of animals are at risk of dying out.
Britain's Prince William spoke at the meeting. He said he understood that many countries do not have enough resources for law enforcement officials.
"But I am asking you to see the connections, to acknowledge that the steps you take to tackle illegal wildlife crime could make it easier to halt the shipments of guns and drugs passing through your borders."
Illegal ivory trade activity has more than doubled since 2007.
It has claimed many human lives. The International Ranger Federation reports that more than 100 wildlife protection officials died trying to fight poachers last year.
And rare wild animals have been pushed to the edge of disappearing. More than 1,300 rhinos were killed in 2015 alone. And the number of Asian tigers has decreased by 95 percent in the last 100 years. Their body parts are in demand for Chinese medicines and alcoholic drinks.
But it is not only big mammals that are at risk.
For example, the numbers of an endangered water frog from Lake Titicaca in Peru have sharply decreased in recent years. Thousands have been caught to make a juice that some people believe has medicinal uses. There is, however, no scientific evidence to support those beliefs.
Officials promise action
At the meeting, delegates supported the decision by China at the beginning of this year to close its domestic ivory market. The move is considered a major step in protecting the world's elephant population.
Aron White is with the Environmental Investigation Agency in Britain. He said other animals need similar protection.
"This market was both stimulating demand for ivory and also enabling illegal ivory to be laundered through this legal trade. But that same issue still exists for big cats."
Activists say existing UN rules on international organized crime can help fight the illegal wildlife trade. But they say those rules are not being used effectively.
United States Attorney General Jeff Sessions told delegates that the U.S. will give $90 million to programs that fight illegal wildlife traffickers.
He said, "These criminals must be and they can be stopped."
The meeting attendees promised to work together to fight the illegal wildlife trade and recognize it as a serious and organized crime.
But it remains to be seen how quickly they will act on those words.
I'm Jonathan Evans.
1.wildlife trade 野生动物贸易
The illegal wildlife trade would not exist were it not for such customer demand.
2.act on 按照...行事
I decided to act on my suspicions and ignore the compassion I felt for him.
3.at risk 处于危险中
Meanwhile, the rest of us remain at risk for discrimination and violence.
4.alcoholic drinks 酒精饮品
Alcoholic drinks act as a poison to a child.
5.Their body parts are in demand for Chinese medicines and alcoholic drinks.
in demand for ...的需求
China has been responsible for one third of the recent growth in demand for oil.
The phenomenal growth in demand for big data talent is apparently set to continue.
6.The meeting attendees promised to work together to fight the illegal wildlife trade and recognize it as a serious and organized crime.
work together to 共同努力
Schools will work together to share best practice.
The staff should work together to revise the school curriculum.
上周，美国和70多个国家的代表在伦敦举行会议，讨论非法野生动物贸易问题 。代表们承诺将共同努力保护濒危动物 。
专家估计，象牙、犀牛角和虎骨灯濒危野生动物的贸易每年估值170亿美元 。如今，数百种物种面临灭绝的危险 。
英国威廉王子在会议上发表了讲话 。他表示，理解很多国家没有足够的资源供执法官员利用 。
这也夺走了很多人的生命 。国际游侠联盟报告指出，去年100多名野生动物保护官员在与偷猎者的斗争中殉职 。
稀有的野生动物被推向濒临灭绝的边缘 。仅在2015年，就有1300多头犀牛被猎杀 。在过去的100年间，亚洲虎的数量减少了95% 。它们的身体部位被用来制作中药、泡药酒 。
例如，近年来，秘鲁提提卡卡湖的一种濒临灭绝的水蛙数量急剧减少 。成千上万的水蛙被捕捉用来制作一种果汁，有些人认为这种果汁有药用价值 。然而，该药效并没有科学证据 。
在会议期间，代表们支持中国在今年年初关闭国内象牙市场的决定 。此举被认为是保护全球大象数量的重要一步 。
艾伦·怀特（Aron White）任职于英国环境调查署 。他指出，其他动物也需要类似的保护措施 。
“这个市场既刺激了对象牙的需求，也使非法象牙能够通过合法贸易洗白 。但对于大型猫科动物来说，同样的问题依然存在 。
活动人士表示，现有的关于国际有组织犯罪的联合国公约已经为打击非法野生动物贸易提供了火力支持 。但这些公约并未得到有效利用 。
美国司法部长杰夫·赛辛斯（Jeff Sessions）告诉与会代表，美国将向打击非法野生动物走私者的项目提供9000万美元 。