Sometimes I feel overwhelmed when I think about what’s going on in the world. I don’t just mean world politics or poverty or climate change, though of course all of those things worry me. But when I sit down and look at beautiful photos of wildlife, especially tigers, I feel such a rush of emotions that I can’t even describe. It’s like these amazing creatures are only here to exist and to exude strength and beauty and humanity is out to destroy their habitats and limit their lives.
WWF recently released a report on the discovery of one new species every 3 days in the Amazon, and reading that just makes me awestruck. To know that these species, and who knows how many others exist that we don’t even know about – and then to think about the rapid rate of deforestation and destruction in the Amazon, (and other amazing forests like it,) that is destroying countless lives and species…it’s just feels like such an overwhelming burden to have the knowledge of why it’s all so wrong.
I personally believe that that the tiger is the most amazing creature in the world. WWF and countless other organizations work day and night to try and combat habitat destruction and senseless killing (human/animal conflict and the sort) of these unbelievable creatures, and yet they are still disappearing at alarming rates and fighting for the survival of their species.
How can so much manpower and money and effort go into the process without yielding the desired results? It’s still amazing to me until you realize that it’s not those with the most education, (and therefore knowledge about how actions impact the environment,) that are doing the most harm, but it’s those with the least recourses and most necessity who are destroying forests for money and destroying species and habitats along with it. I’ve read about all the work that Panthera does, an NGO that looks to set up wildlife corridors to save the world’s 36 species of wild cats, as well as the work that WWF does in many places in the world – which is working from the ground up to educate and communicate with indigenous LOCAL groups to get their cooperation in protecting the forest.
The world of Conservation recognizes its limitations, particularly when it comes to the destruction of forests and it is because of this that REDD+ (Reduction of Emissions from Deforestation and Degradation) has come into action. REDD+ was established with the idea that it’s the people who manage forest resources that should be rewarded accordingly for the reduction of greenhouse gas emissions. In other words, if people are looking to cut forests to earn money, they need to be compensated with money for preserving the same forest. This new system being put in place all over the world gives at least some hope that perhaps we have the answer to the problem of cutting forests after all, money.
I have to be hopeful that REDD will at least begin to help answer the problems of deforestation and with the Green Movement sweeping the world, hopefully people really are becoming more conscious of where their products and goods are coming from, rather than just buying whatever looks nice regardless of its sustainability. Raising awareness is only the first step to saving these amazing creatures from becoming extinct.