Celebrating 10 Years of Zero Elephant Poaching
This year, Wildlife Alliance is celebrating ten years of zero elephant poaching in the Cardamom Rainforest. This monumental achievement is a result of the direct protection Wildlife Alliance has provided. In the early 2000s, the Cardamom Rainforest was a hotspot for elephant and tiger poaching. Between 2000 and 2006, 37 wild Asian elephants were poached in the Cardamoms. In response to this crisis, Wildlife Alliance partnered with the Cambodian government to increase effective patrolling and law enforcement. “Achieving zero elephant poaching for more than a decade in the Cardamoms is a fantastic achievement and demonstrates that investing in law enforcement is the best way to achieve conservation results,” says Wildlife Alliance’s CEO, Suwanna Gauntlett.
Since 2006, the Southern Cardamom Forest Protection Program (SCFPP) rangers have gone on over 24,000 patrols, have removed over 140,000 snares, and have sent 300 offenders to court, leaving the forests they protect safe for elephants to roam free. Dr. Thomas Gray, Wildlife Alliance’s Director of Science, explained, “With the global poaching crisis, an estimated 30,000 elephants are being killed yearly to supply increasing demand for illegal ivory products. Thus, we cannot be complacent.” By directly protecting the 1.7 million acres (720,000 hectares) of the South West Elephant Corridor, Wildlife Alliance is providing the endangered Asian elephant with a safe corridor to move between protected landscapes.
Wildlife Alliance was founded by Suwanna Gauntlett to offer direct protection to forests and wildlife through cutting edge conservation programs. The organization provides technical assistance and critical thinking to governments and strives for stakeholder consensus in achieving solutions to multiple environmental threats, including animal trafficking, economic land concessions for agro-industrial plantations and mining, and community encroachment on forestland. Wildlife Alliance is the leader in direct action in the Southeast Asian tropical belt.