Yesterday United States Secretary of State, Hilary Clinton announced U.S. commitment to curb illegal global wildlife trade, an industry estimated to supplement illicit economies at $10 -15 billion annually, second only to drug trafficking. Clinton and the U.S. government acknowledged their responsibility (the U.S. is the world’s second largest importer of illegal wildlife) and their plans to improve the situation.
“We have to look at this in a comprehensive, holistic way,” Clinton said. “There’s something for everybody. If you love animals, if you want to see a more secure world, if you want our economy not to be corrupted globally by this kind of illicit behavior, there is so much we can do together. After all, the world’s wildlife, both on land and in our waters, is such a precious resource, but it is also a limited one. It cannot be manufactured. And once it’s gone, it cannot be replenished. And those who profit from it illegally are not just undermining our borders and our economies. They are truly stealing from the next generation. So we have to work together to stop them and ensure a sustainable future for our wildlife, the people who live with them, and the people who appreciate them everywhere.”
Nature of the Dutch Caribbean is not absolved from the impacts of illegal wildlife trade. From seashells to parrots, animals and animal products from our islands are in high global demand. Last year STINAPA Bonaire and Echo teamed up to confiscate and rehabilitate 112 parrots set for the international market.