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Former CITES Secretary-General is Rethinking Biodiversity Governance

Since the 1970s, several international environmental agreements and institutions were created to address the conservation of biodiversity, including the Convention on the International Trade of Endangered Species (CITES) (1973) and the Convention on Biodiversity (1992). However, the 2018 Living Planet Index Report concluded that since 1970, there has been a 60% decrease in global biodiversity, calling into question the effectiveness of these institutions. At the epicenter of this discussion is John Scanlon – former Secretary-General of CITES, wildlife advocate, and champion of change for environmental law from the local to the international level. Taking an innovative approach to international policy-making, Scanlon is asking big questions that have the potential to shape how the international community approaches biodiversity conservation. His recent work asks if it is time to rethink our approach to setting biodiversity targets and whether, “we need a wildlife crime convention?” -- questions long overdue in the international biodiversity regime.

For more information, please see John Scanlon’s recent writings and our interview with him as featured in the GEG Project’s Leadership Dialogue.

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