So here we are at the beginning of 2019 and as we embark for another year of campaigning against environmental crime and abuse, here’s a brief look back at some of the wins and highlights you’ve helped us to achieve during 2018.
- Our Climate team made headlines around the world after our undercover investigation tracked an alarming and unexplained spike of banned ozone-destroying chlorofluorocarbons (CFCs) in the atmosphere back to their illegal use in China.
- For Forests, our expert analysis of legislation in both the European Union and US demonstrated how their laws could work together to better keep stolen timber out of the marketplace and our undercover investigators found further evidence of Vietnam’s massive and ongoing theft of timber from neighbouring Cambodia
- Our Ocean team’s work played a major role in thwarting Japan’s bid to overturn the moratorium on commercial whaling at the International Whaling Commission (IWC) and, in partnership with Greenpeace, we conducted a wide-ranging survey of UK supermarkets to assess the scale of their plastic packaging problem
- In Wildlife, the findings of our investigations into illegal wildlife trade in the Golden Triangle played a significant role in convincing the US Government to put wildlife crime kingpin Zhao Wei on its blacklist. Long years of tireless campaigning contributed to China’s decision last January to shut down its domestic ivory trade, long a stimulant and cover for poached ivory – and, at the end of the year, we and our campaign partners celebrated another major win when the UK Government’s near-total ivory trade ban became law. Key players in Vietnam’s ivory- and wildlife-smuggling syndicates were revealed in our report Exposing the Hydra
- Our new Pangolin Project was launched in response to this shy, scaled creature becoming the world’s most trafficked mammal
We’ve long prided ourselves as a small organisation packing a major punch and certainly lived up to this again in 2018.
However, environmental abuse doesn’t rest and many challenges lie ahead of us this year.
For example, we may have helped maintain the ban on commercial whaling at the IWC but Japan’s subsequent decision to quit the IWC and go it alone as a pariah state means the threat to whales, dolphins and porpoises continues, making it as important as ever that we continue to expose and oppose commercial whaling as unnecessary, unsustainable and inhumane through 2019.
Once again, we couldn’t have done any of this without you so our sincere thanks for your ongoing support in the past year!