To commemorate World Wildlife Day, which this year marked 50 years since the signing of the CITES wildlife trade treaty, Drs. Tersea Lappe-Osthege and Alison Hutchinson contemplate the future of European Biodiversity Politics in our latest article published in the Green European Journal.
In November and December 2022, the trade of wildlife and the protection of biodiversity were discussed in two major Conferences (CITES CoP-19 and CBD CoP-15 respectively) drawing together governments from across the globe. Following our attendance at these events, we reflect on the role of European markets for driving international wildlife trade, with often unrecognised impacts on native and threatened European species.
We contend that biodiversity loss is a European problem too but all too often responsibility is deflected outwards, especially to African or Asian nations. Biodiversity governance currently rests on significant power and wealth disparities, and wildlife and the environment continue to be valued primarily for their contribution to the global economy. For more in-depth reflections on the impacts and scope of European biodiversity governance, and our thoughts on the transformative changes needed to address the biodiversity crisis, take a look at our article: ‘Global Biodiversity Governance Has a Big Blindspot’.