The news article I read is about president Barack Obama launching an initiative in Tanzania on Monday the 1st of July. It is aimed at stopping illegal wildlife trafficking and restraining extensive poaching of rhinos and elephants in Africa.
Using his executive authority, Obama established a Presidential Task Force on Wildlife Trafficking composed of the State, Interior and Justice departments to devise a national strategy over the next six months. He also created an independent, eight-member advisory panel that will offer recommendations to the task force.
In addition, the State Department will provide $US10 million ($11 million) in training and technical assistance to combat poaching in Africa. Three million dollars will go to South Africa, $US3 million to Kenya and $US4 million elsewhere in sub-Saharan Africa.
In my opinion I believe that poaching rhinos and elephants is a terrible and it is exceptional that a person with such a high ranking would notice it. The money would really help the countries that have a poaching problem.
Elephants and rhinos are such beautiful creatures and are already becoming endangered. The large demand for animal parts has had a devastating effect on African wildlife. About 30,000 elephants were killed illegally in 2012 – the largest number in 20 years. South Africa has lost almost 450 rhinos this year, which could make 2013 a record for that animal.
The money and Presidential Task Force will help with the prevention of poaching and trafficking. But I am not sure if that is really enough. People are still killing elephants and rhinoceroses and selling them to the black markets. There must be another way that we, as citizens, can help as well. With a black-market price of $30,000 a pound rhinoceros horns are literally worth greater than their weight in gold. Ivory from elephant tusks is selling for $1,000 a pound.
Overall, I think that elephants and rhinos should be protected so our future generations can witness the beauty of these creatures. People should really do a lot more to help them as well.
You can find the article I read here: http://www.smh.com.au/environment/animals/obama-cracks-down-on-wildlife-trafficking-20130702-2p8tr.html