☷Joint Statement on Nature Crime United States Department of State
U.S. Department of State ( By Press Release office)
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Yesterday in New York , Norwegian Minister of Climate and Environment Espen Barth Eide and U . S . Assistant Secretary of State for Oceans and International Environmental and Scientific Affairs Monica Medina co - hosted the Nature Crime Roundtable with ministers and senior officials from 11 countries , who gathered to address the challenges that nature crime – criminal forms of logging , mining , wildlife trade , land conversion , and associated criminal activities , as well as crimes associated with fishing – pose for sustainable development , and how to counter that challenge . After the roundtable , Minister Eide and Assistant Secretary Medina , on behalf of the Governments of Norway and the United States , released the following statement:Begin TextWe welcome the active participation today by our colleagues at the Nature Crime Roundtable: Raising Ambition to Combat Nature Crime and thank all the participants for their important contributions and insights . As we heard today , nature crime – criminal forms of logging , mining , wildlife trade , land conversion , and associated criminal activities , as well as crimes associated with fishing – gives rise to one of the largest illicit economies in the world , valued at hundreds of billions of dollars annually . These crimes harm ecosystems and local communities , hamper development and pose significant long - term consequences for future generations . The United States and Norway are close partners in combating these direct threats to nature and people . Nature is but the first victim in this organized , international criminal chain of exploitation . The syndicates who perpetrate these crimes fuel corruption , financial crimes , including tax evasion and money laundering , and sow destruction everywhere they operate . No country , no land , no waters , no people are safe from their illegal , often brutal activities . We look forward to working with those who joined us today as we further develop a new collaborative initiative – the Nature Crime Alliance . End textRoundtable participants noted a variety of effective interventions and investments to combat nature crime but agreed that these efforts fall far short of what is needed to end these illegal activities . To turn the tide , political commitment to combat nature crime must increase by an order of magnitude . The Nature Crime Alliance would serve as an international , multi - stakeholder initiative to:Catalyze political will to aggressively pursue the powerful criminal networks and actors that commit nature crime , working to strengthen the legal frameworks and enforcement tools to that end;Engage civil society , technical experts , and law enforcement entities to bolster operational capacity and cooperation to better identify , disrupt , and prosecute the individuals and syndicates controlling nature crime and the other illicit activities it enables;Enlist donors , philanthropies , and multilateral organizations to finance and propel this fight to the next level , leveraging resources where these crimes converge;Support the rights of Indigenous peoples and the security of Indigenous Peoples and local communities , including women , in their efforts to counter nature crime and strengthen their capacities to conserve , sustainably manage and defend nature , upon which we all depend . For more information , see https://naturecrimealliance . org/
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