183 Countries Are Meeting to Discuss the Future of the World’s Wildlife
Trying to determine the value of the black market wildlife trade is, by its nature, nearly impossible. But the trafficking monitoring group TRAFFIC estimates billions of dollars’ worth of plants and animal species are traded illegally each year.
The potential impact of wildlife trafficking on rare and endangered species led to the signing in 1973 of an international treaty called the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora.
CITES governs the trade of more than 35,000 species of plants and animals, and delegates from 183 countries are gathering from Sept. 24 to Oct. 5 for the 17th Conference of the Parties in Johannesburg.
The conference will consider more than 200 proposals, 62 of which are aimed at either tightening or loosening trade restrictions for certain species.