A recent report prepared by three NGOs for an anti-poaching summit in Botswana, as reported by Reuters, identifies an interesting correlation between human wellbeing and levels of elephant poaching. Using data from 42 sites throughout Africa monitored by a U.N.-backed program found that “Human infant mortality, which is interpreted as a proxy for poverty, is the single strongest site-level correlate ... with sites suffering from higher levels of poverty experiencing higher levels of elephant poaching."
The report by TRAFFIC, the International Union for Conservation of Nature, and the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species suggests that “there may be a greater incentive to facilitate or participate in the illegal killing of elephants in areas where human livelihoods are insecure.” It also suggests that people who live in poaching areas are deriving little benefit from the booming global ivory trade. The areas were the correlation was shown most dramatically were in Guinea, Mozambique, the Central African Republic, and the Democratic Republic of Congo.
At the national level, the most significant correlation was poor governance as measured by Transparency International’s Corruption Perceptions Index.
Driven largely by demand from Asia, rates of elephant poaching have risen dramatically to about 5 percent of the total population, greater than the animal’s birthrate.
TODAY IN SLATE
The Democrats’ War at Home
How can the president’s party defend itself from the president’s foreign policy blunders?
Congress’ Public Shaming of the Secret Service Was Political Grandstanding at Its Best
Michigan’s Tradition of Football “Toughness” Needs to Go—Starting With Coach Hoke
A Plentiful, Renewable Resource That America Keeps Overlooking
Windows 8 Was So Bad That Microsoft Will Skip Straight to Windows 10
Cringing. Ducking. Mumbling.
How GOP candidates react whenever someone brings up reproductive rights or gay marriage.
You Deserve a Pre-cation
The smartest job perk you’ve never heard of.