Conservation Highlights May 2013

Conservation Highlights
May 2014
Recent achievements and challenges in WWF’s work to protect
biodiversity and reduce humanity’s footprint in priority areas of
the global conservation programme
Conservation Highlights, May 2014
Since its launch in 2007, WWF’s Earth Hour has become the
world’s largest mass participation environmental initiative, active
in over 160 countries, and is becoming a platform where people
are mobilising action on climate and other global, regional and
local environmental priorities.
Conservation Highlights, May 2014
Earth Hour 2014 event
Earth Hour 2014 set new records for
global participation in March, with 162
countries and 7,000 cities celebrating the
event. New crowdsourcing and
crowdfunding initiatives enable people to
use their voices or their money to support
WWF conservation actions.
© Getty Images
Conservation Highlights, May 2014
Cape Town awarded Earth Hour Capital 2014
WWF’s Earth Hour City Challenge
recognized Cape Town as the Global
Earth Hour Capital 2014. The South
African city took bold steps to move away
from fossil fuels to renewable energy. The
competition attracted 160 cities from 14
countries to promote low carbon
development and combat climate change.
© We love cities
Conservation Highlights, May 2014
Earth Hour 2014 launches crowdsourcing 1/2
The idea of mobilizing the voices of the Earth Hour audience in
support of environmental actions around the globe took off with
Earth Hour 2014:
 In China, Earth Hour took the theme “Blue Sky” on the need to stop
pollution and smog, using a photo-based phone app
• The #maketheswitch Earth Hour message in the UAE reached more
than 5 million people, urging a switch to energy efficient lighting
• For the 3rd year running, more than 100,000 Earth Hour fans in
Russia joined an environmental petition, this time calling for increased
protection for 5 threatened species including the Far Eastern leopard
Conservation Highlights, May 2014
Earth Hour 2014 launches crowdsourcing 2/2
•Over 2,000 energy-efficient stoves were distributed in Madagascar, to
reduce pressure on forests, and crowdfunding on the Earth Hour site raised
funds for a further 500 stoves
• In Finland, 20,000 people called for a fair subsidy policy for solar power.
Helping drive the pledge #EarthHourSuomi was the most tweeted hashtag in
the country
• 12,000 signatures on a petition against the proposed Ptolemaida V coalfired power station in Greece will go to the government and KfW, the finance
bank and sole investor
Conservation Highlights, May 2014
WWF has run many campaigns to focus attention on key issues
and solutions. Current global campaigns include a call to shift
investments away from fossil fuels to renewable energy sources,
and an emergency campaign to address the threat of oil drilling in
Africa’s prized Virunga National Park in the Democratic Republic
of Congo.
Conservation Highlights, May 2014
WWF is campaigning to save Virunga – Africa’s oldest national
park and most biodiverse protected area – from oil drilling. Virunga
is also a vital resource for local communities, supporting tens of
thousands of people. But this iconic place is under threat from
irresponsible oil exploration. Some lines should not be crossed,
and drilling for oil in Virunga is one of these.
Conservation Highlights, May 2014
OECD investigation of Soco
Allegations of human rights violations and
breaching of environmental protection by UK oil
exploration company Soco International PLC
relating to its work in Virunga, are being
investigated by an Organisation for Economic
Cooperation and Development (OECD) agency.
Announced in February, this follows a complaint
from WWF that Soco has breached OECD
global corporate responsibility standards.
© Brent Stirton / Reportage by Getty / WWF-Canon
Conservation Highlights, May 2014
Opposition increases to Soco’s oil plans
Protests against Soco’s plans to start seismic
testing for oil in Virunga voiced community
concerns this will damage or destroy their
livelihoods, and could reignite civil conflict.
More than 675,000 people have joined WWF’s
petition to demand that Virunga be protected
from the damaging impacts of oil.
© Edgar Mbekemoja
Conservation Highlights, May 2014
World Heritage Sites now ‘no-go’ for Total
French oil giant Total has confirmed it will
not explore for oil and gas in World
Heritage Sites (WHS). This was
announced in February by the United
Nations agency in charge of WHS. Total’s
decision follows an earlier pledge to
remain out of Virunga.
© Brent Stirton / Reportage by Getty Images / WWF-Canon
Conservation Highlights, May 2014
BREAKING NEWS: Soco agrees to pull out of Virunga!
UK oil company Soco International PLC
announced in June it will end its operations in
Africa’s oldest national park and has committed
to remain out of all other UNESCO World
Heritage Sites. “Today is a victory for our planet
and for good practices in business. This
success is the work of government officials,
activists within DRC and supporters worldwide
who joined together to help remove the most
immediate threat to Virunga,” said Marco
Lambertini, Director General of WWF
© Brent Stirton / Reportage by Getty / WWF-Canon
Conservation Highlights, May 2014
Seize Your Power
WWF’s Seize Your Power campaign to promote clean, renewable
energy aims to mobilize key organisations investing in new energy
sources to shift US$40 billion away from fossil fuels into clean
renewable energy sources. This shift is crucial to rapidly move the
world towards climate-safe energy.
Conservation Highlights, May 2014
EBRD commits to step out of coal
WWF welcomed the decision by the
European Bank for Reconstruction and
Development (EBRD) to phase out
funding of coal-fired power stations, but
called for effective implementation.
EBRD is the third major development
finance body to move away from coalbased energy projects.
© WWF-Canon / Mauri RAUTKARI
Conservation Highlights, May 2014
Action to counter climate change must happen now
A major UN report calls for a more than
tripling of investments in clean energy
solutions as the main measure to
mitigate climate change. The April report,
agreed by the IPCC, finds that
investment in clean energy sources will
have limited economic impact compared
to the very significant costs of inaction.
© Kevin Schafer / WWF-Canon
Conservation Highlights, May 2014
WWF’s regional campaigns range from action on threatened
species such as tigers and sharks, to specific challenges against
environmentally-damaging development schemes such as dams.
Conservation Highlights, May 2014
As apex predators, sharks are crucially important to the health of
the world’s oceans, but are being wiped out on a massive scale –
an estimated 100 million killed annually, mostly for shark fin soup,
an Asian delicacy. Sharks also breed slowly. WWF offices in the
Asia-Pacific region are campaigning to get their countries to stop
importing, selling and consuming shark fin.
Conservation Highlights, May 2014
Progress on addressing the shark slaughter
Key shark fin importing hubs, Hong Kong
and Singapore, report reduced demand for
shark fin following campaigns against
unsustainable shark killing. HK reported a
one-third drop in shark fin imports in 2013
compared to 2012. In Singapore shark fin
sales to hotels and restaurants also fell by
one-third, and prices fell similarly.
© NC Turner / WWF-Canon
Conservation Highlights, May 2014
DiCaprio funds help Nepal’s tiger numbers double
The Leonardo DiCaprio Foundation has
donated $3 million for WWF to help double
Nepal’s tiger population by 2022. WWF’s
work with local agencies and communities
has helped one tiger population almost triple
to 50 tigers. Habitat destruction and
poaching are the key threats to the 3,200
remaining wild tigers.
© Tom Munro/JBG Photo
Conservation Highlights, May 2014
WWF has a strong and successful track record of challenging
development projects that will cause environmental and social
damage. Current campaigns are running against ill-planned
projects such as ports, roads and dams in conservation priority
areas such as the Amazon, Mekong and Danube as well as World
Heritage Sites such as the Great Barrier Reef and Doñana.
Conservation Highlights, May 2014
Dam threatens food security in the Mekong
A declaration opposing construction of the
Xayaburi Dam in Laos on the main Mekong
River has been issued by a consortium
representing 39 NGOs and civil society
groups including WWF. The dam threatens
the huge Mekong fishing industry which
supports 60 million people in the region with
food and livelihoods.
© WWF-Greater Mekong
Conservation Highlights, May 2014
Development threats to Australia’s Great Barrier Reef
WWF has joined a legal challenge launched
in Australia to stop the dumping in the Great
Barrier Reef (GBR) of 3mill m3 of material
excavated for development of a megaport
for coal exports. The dumping is also
opposed by tourism operators: tourism in
the GBR generates $5 billion annually.
© WWF-Canon / Martin HARVEY
Conservation Highlights, May 2014
Victories in Europe against destructive development 1:
Croatia has stopped a proposed scheme that
would have canalized a 53 km section of the
Danube River along the Croatia-Serbia border,
and destroyed key natural sites including a
renowned bird paradise.
© WWF-Canon / Anton VORAUER
Conservation Highlights, May 2014
Victories in Europe against destructive development 2:
A WWF campaign against construction of small
hydropower in high conservation value rivers in
Rumania has gained success with a
government commitment to develop a
hydropower policy in line with EU standards.
© WWF-România
Conservation Highlights, May 2014
Victories in Europe against destructive development 3:
A 22-year battle to save the Acheloos River in
Greece from a massive water diversion
scheme has been won with a decision by the
country’s supreme administrative court
upholding the objections of WWF and a
coalition of NGOs and municipal authorities
against the diversion.
© Nikoç Metpou
Conservation Highlights, May 2014
Doñana at 50 – a paradise still threatened
Spain’s Coto Doñana is one of Europe’s
most valuable wetlands, sanctuary for
millions of migratory birds. Purchase of the
land in 1963 started WWF on the path to
protect thousands of priority places and
species worldwide. In this 50th anniversary
of Doñana’s creation, WWF remains
committed to ensure Doñana remains a vital
stopover for migratory birds.
© Jorge Sierra / WWF-Spain
Conservation Highlights, May 2014
WWF’s biodiversity meta-goal is to ensure the integrity of the most
outstanding natural places on Earth. This includes the protection of
biodiversity in high conservation priority areas, and restoring
populations of those species with the highest ecological, economic
and cultural value.
Conservation Highlights, May 2014
WWF recognises community conservation in Namibia
WWF recognised Namibia’s communal
conservancy programme as a Gift to the
Earth. Wildlife & habitat have recovered
and rural communities gain by managing
their own environment. The 79
conservancies cover 16 million hectares,
help bring half of Namibia under
conservation management and involve 1
in 10 Namibians.
© John E. Newby / WWF-Canon
Conservation Highlights, May 2014
Community support vital to secure endangered species 1:
Mountain gorillas
The 3 countries sheltering mountain
gorillas, Democratic Republic of Congo,
Rwanda and Uganda, agreed to protect
gorilla habitat spanning their shared
borders and maximise the value of
tourism for local communities. Gorillabased tourism brings income to local
communities, whose support is essential
to protect the gorillas.
© WWF-Canon / Martin HARVEY
Conservation Highlights, May 2014
Community support vital to secure endangered species 2:
Saiga antelope
Anti-poaching action helped more than
triple Saiga antelope populations in
Mongolia from 3,000 in 1998 to 10,000 in
2013, and the species has expanded into
regions where it was wiped out decades
© Wild Wonders / Igor Shpilenhok / WWF
Conservation Highlights, May 2014
Regional conservation agreed in south-east Europe
Eight south-east Europe countries, from
Albania in the south to Slovenia in the
north, have agreed regional cooperation
on conservation and to increase
protected area by 13% including two new
national parks. Conservation goals will be
included in national development plans
and nature-based tourism promoted.
© Wild Wonders / Ruben Smit / WWF
Conservation Highlights, May 2014
Regional conservation agreed in Europe and Arctic
The five countries host to polar bear
populations committed to ensure the
future of this species as climate change
hugely threatens its ice habitat. At a high
level forum in Moscow in December,
Canada, Denmark, Norway, Russia and
US agreed to implement a circumpolar
action plan for polar bear conservation.
© WWF / David Jenkins
Conservation Highlights, May 2014
Governments commit to action on poaching crisis
Forty-six countries committed to “decisive
and urgent action” at the London
Conference on Illegal Wildlife Trade in
February with stronger enforcement,
reduced consumer demand and
sustainable livelihoods for communities
living alongside wildlife. Poaching
threatens wildlife, rangers and civil
society by promoting criminality.
© James Morgan / WWF-Canon
Conservation Highlights, May 2014
Slaughter of SA rhino continues
Poachers killed 1004 rhinos in South
Africa in 2013 -- a sharp increase from
668 lost in 2012. Recent conservation
success in rebuilding rhino numbers is
now at risk. South Africa, home to about
80% of Africa’s rhinos, is working with
key countries including Viet Nam to
counter the illegal trade, through tougher
sentences and reduced demand.
© WWF-Canon / Martin HARVEY
Conservation Highlights, May 2014
Nepal celebrates a year of zero poaching
WWF honoured the work of 9
organizations in Nepal with Leaders for a
Living Planet awards for having achieved
zero poaching of elephant, rhino and
tiger for a second 12 month period. The
organizations, including protected area
agencies, military and police units, show
poaching can be stopped, wildlife crime
curbed, and tourism can benefit.
© Akash Shrestha / WWF Nepal
Conservation Highlights, May 2014
WWF has been active in Latin America and the Caribbean since its
creation, as this region hosts tremendous biodiversity riches
including the world's largest tropical rainforest, the Amazon. To
mark the holding of WWF's 2014 Annual Conference in Brazil, a
selection of conservation highlights from the region is presented.
Conservation Highlights, May 2014
Bolivia takes leadership on freshwater conservation
Bolivia has committed to wisely manage the
6.9 million-hectare Llanos de Moxos
wetland, headwaters for the priority Madeira
River – major southern tributary of the
Amazon River. WWF recognized this
globally significant action as a Gift to the
Earth. Bolivia leads the world with almost 15
mill ha of wetlands designated under the
Ramsar Convention.
© WWF-Bolivia / Omar Rocha
Conservation Highlights, May 2014
Increased sightings of gray whales in Mexico
For four consecutive years, numbers of
migratory gray whales are up in the main
coastal lagoons of Mexico’s Baja California.
Researchers in one lagoon counted 2017
individuals in February compared to 1178 in
2013 – a 44% increase. Gray whales
congregate in the lagoons during the winter
breeding season.
© WWF-Canon / Michel Terrettaz
Conservation Highlights, May 2014
Protection of monarch butterfly habitat in Mexico
Successes of WWF’s five year partnership
with the Carlos Slim Foundation include
300,000 ha of protected areas, better
management of a further million ha, and
reduced logging in the core zone of the
monarch butterfly reserve. WWF seeks to
protect the butterfly migration route across
North America – a major natural wonder.
© WWF-Canon / Kevin Schafer
Conservation Highlights, May 2014
Chile acts on blue whale conservation
Creation by Chile of a new marine protected
area (MPA) helps secure a local blue whale
population – the largest mammal on Earth –
following 15 years of effort by WWF and
other organizations to protect the area from
salmon farming and damaging
development. The MPA is a vital feeding
and nursery area for blue whales and
several other cetacean species.
© / David Fleetham / WWF
Conservation Highlights, May 2014
Marine conservation in Colombia
Colombia has created a new coastal
protected area to secure important nesting
beaches for endangered leatherback and
hawksbill turtles, in collaboration with local
community councils
© Nils Aukan / WWF-Canon
Conservation Highlights, May 2014
Towards sustainable beef production in Latin America
Almost one-third of the world’s beef is
produced in Latin America and demand for
beef drives forest loss in many of WWF’s
priority areas. WWF seeks implementation
of the Global Roundtable on Sustainable
Beef principles to achieve less damaging
cattle ranching practices through improved
land-use and consumer demand.
© Adriano Gambarini/ WWF-Brazil
Conservation Highlights, May 2014
Deforestation rates in Brazil surge
After several years of declining
deforestation rates, Brazil’s annual
deforestation rate has risen 28 percent.
Forests are cleared for reasons including
illegal mining and soy production. The Brazil
Government stated its commitment to
reverse increased deforestation and
eliminate illegal logging in the Amazon.
© Brent Stirton / Getty images / WWF
Conservation Highlights, May 2014
Drop in deforestation in Argentina’s Atlantic Forest
Deforestation of the WWF priority Atlantic
Forest in Argentina’s Misiones Province has
decreased by 70% since new regulations in
2010 to stop rampant forest clearance. The
landuse law forbids clear-cutting and
imposes other restrictions in the remaining
forest, reducing annual forest loss from
18,000 ha to 5,300 ha.
© WWF-Canon / Michel Gunther
Conservation Highlights, May 2014
WWF’s second meta-goal is to reduce humankind’s Ecological
Footprint so that we live within the renewable resource limits of our
planet. This builds on strong foundations and targets humanity’s
carbon, commodity and water footprints which have the greatest
impact on biodiversity.
Conservation Highlights, May 2014
WWF develops key water stewardship partnerships
WWF is partnering with global fashion
company H&M and the Mondi Group,
one of the world’s largest pulp and
paper producers, to implement water
stewardship and support wise water
management in priority river basins.
Conservation Highlights, May 2014
Progress towards sustainable fisheries
The European Parliament voted in
October for measures to support
sustainable fishing and against
destructive practices along lines
proposed by WWF.
A WWF pilot project shows satellite
surveillance of fishing activities can
promote legal and transparent fishing
operations – especially to counter
illegal, unreported and unregulated
(IUU) fishing.
© Mike R. Jackson / WWF-Canon
Conservation Highlights, May 2014
Leading paper companies embrace transparency
Twenty-five of the world’s major pulp and
paper manufacturers, with a combined
annual output of 85 million tonnes, joined
the WWF Environmental Paper Company
Index 2013 and disclosed the footprints of
40 product categories, reporting on targets
and performance. This industry is key to
conserving forests.
© Edward Parker / WWF-Canon
Conservation Highlights, May 2014
ASC salmon available in key Japanese market
Atlantic salmon from Norway certified by the
Aquaculture Stewardship Council (ASC) is
now available for consumers in Japan, a
major seafood consumer. Farmed fish now
makes up half of all seafood and demand is
growing. ASC sets robust standards to
minimise impacts on local communities and
© WWF-Canon / Jo BENN
Conservation Highlights, May 2014
Indonesian paper companies turning over a new leaf?
WWF calls for continued pressure on
Indonesia’s pulp and paper industry to
ensure recent commitments on
responsible forest management and
reduced deforestation are implemented.
Companies such as APRIL and APP can
restore critical forest and wetland areas,
reduce climate emissions, and
compensate affected communities.
© Eyes on the Forest
Conservation Highlights, May 2014
The Forest Stewardship Council (FSC) is 20 years old
Since 1994, the Forest Stewardship
Council (FSC) has certified 180 million ha
of forest across 81 countries worldwide as
sustainably managed. WWF helped create
the FSC to mobilize market forces,
including consumer choice, in support of
responsible forest management that
delivers social and environmental benefits
© N.C. Turner / WWF-Canon
Conservation Highlights, May 2014
The climate crisis is perhaps the ultimate test of WWF’s ability to
harness its strengths to leverage political commitment at the scale
required by an issue that threatens the world as we know it.
Conservation Highlights, May 2014
Denmark recognised for climate leadership
WWF has recognised as a Gift to the
Earth Denmark’s inspiring leadership
and example addressing climate change
with its highly ambitious commitments to
reduce carbon emissions, phase out
fossil fuels, and switch to renewable
energy. Denmark has committed to
achieve 100% clean renewable energy
by 2050 with coal phased out by 2030.
© National Geographic Stock/Sarah Leen/WWF
Conservation Highlights, May 2014
World leaders agree key mechanism to stop
World leaders agreed a finance package
to provide funds for tropical forest
nations which are reducing CO2
emissions from deforestation and forest
degradation (REDD+). This addresses
the 20% of global emissions caused by
forest loss and is a major victory for the
world’s tropical forests, forest
communities and our climate.
© Brent Stirton / Getty Images
Conservation Highlights, May 2014
IPCC report details clear evidence of climate change
A UN climate impact report prepared by
the world’s leading scientific authorities in
the IPCC shows climate change is is
affecting the lives of people worldwide
and the ecosystems sustaining life. The
report sets a stark choice: cut emissions
and face challenging and barely
manageable risks - or do nothing and face
a world of devastating risks and impacts.
© Juan Carlos Del Olmo / WWF
Conservation Highlights, May 2014
Perhaps WWF’s greatest strength is its people - the staff and
officers who together with our partners strive for a living planet.
And there are many leaders and champions playing key roles
outside WWF to achieve conservation success and sustainable
development. By highlighting these environmental champions
WWF recognises their contribution, profiles conservation success
and inspires others to take up the challenge to secure a living
Conservation Highlights, May 2014
Unilever CEO awarded top WWF honour
Paul Polman, CEO of global consumer
group Unilever, has been recognised by
WWF for his global leadership in making
sustainability a key issue within the
global retail sector with the 2013 WWF
Duke of Edinburgh Conservation Medal.
Polman led the drive to reduce Unilever’s
environmental impact.
© WWF / Jay Louvion Studio Casagrande
Conservation Highlights, May 2014
Inspirational environmental leaders recognised
Nina Jensen, CEO of WWF- Norway has
been recognised as one of 200 young
global leaders 2014 by the World
Economic Forum for her community
involvement and inspired leadership.
WWF paid tribute to former South African
President Nelson Mandela who died in
December. Mandela received WWF’s Gift
to the Earth award in 1998 for creation of
Table Mountain National Park.
© Getty Images
Conservation Highlights, May 2014
New Director-General for WWF International
WWF announced the appointment of Dr
Marco Lambertini as Director General of
WWF International. With 25 years of
global conservation leadership, Marco
began as a WWF youth volunteer in Italy.
Marco officiated at the opening in March
of the new WWF-Korea office which will
focus on footprint issues such as climate
change, and sustainable fisheries.
© Gemma Parkes / WWF
Conservation Highlights, May 2014
Thank you

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