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Convention On International Trade In Endangered Species Notes

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This is an extract of our Convention On International Trade In Endangered Species document, which we sell as part of our International Environmental Law Notes collection written by the top tier of University Of Otago students.

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14th April 2011, International Environmental Law: Different conventions seem to cluster into different kinds. Rather than focusing on particular species, there is a move to focusing on habitats or areas. An International Issue? Boundaries, commons, migration, threats of international character, global costs and benefits?
- CITES - Trade Mixed

* CMS - Habitat, taking

* Ramsar 1971 - wetlands/waterfowl Area-Based
- World Heritage Convention 1972
- CBD - BD in situ (areas) and ex situ It doesn't always work very well. 1972 World Heritage Convention protects areas of local heritage - some of those heritage places eg. Great Barrier Reef are protected partly because of their biological diversity value. While this classification scheme is used a lot, see a lot of overlap and things often don't fit into one of the classes. True to say that CITES is species based rather than protecting habitats. Bodansky's Themes (p125 Biological Diversity notes)
- Respect for national sovereignty
- Facilitative not coercive - you can't force states to do anything. While this looks like cooperation, you only need to be so cooperative... (?)
- Flexible CITES:

* 'Perhaps the most successful of all international treaties concerned with wildlife conservation' - (D Ong 'IEL governing threats to biological diversity' in Fitzmaurice et al Research Handbook on IEL)

* Basic principles, many parties

* Prohibits and regulates trade

* Implicitly legitimizes trade... tension between preservation and sustainable use

* Reservations, limited scope, illegal trade Most people are so familiar with CITES as it is expressed and implemented, but don't necessarily think about it e.g. posters at airports about what you can't bring home e.g. skin handbags. CITES is simple, its scope is very narrow. It really is targeting one threat - trade in endangered species. It doesn't try to do anything else - it just tries to prohibit and regulate trade. Fairly easy for states to implement. While the principles are basic it is also reasonably clear cut. Perhaps because of all these things, it has many parties. Weaknesses: literature complains that because CITES is talking about trade and trying to regulate trade, it in a way legitimises trade. In this way it 'normalises' trade. It also brings with it the tension between preservation and sustainable use, because it is prohibiting and regulating trade -

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