International law can at times, and certainly should, have a strong level of integration with environmental law and environmental concerns. While a lot of this interaction revolves around the topics of pollution, the older and traditional problems, such as poaching, still require international attention. In Africa and Asia, skyrocketing levels of poaching are creating a serious risk of extinction for several species of animals including rhinos, tigers, and elephants. Even animals that are supposed to be being protected in wild life preserves and government owned parks have been subject to prey, despite the safe guards sent up to prevent such intrusions. Considering the high black market prices set for coveted goods like tiger pelts and ivory tusks, there is a strong interest in disregarding international and domestic laws designed to curtail this problem.
According to a recent New York Times article, the reports of illegal poaching have reached record highs over the past few years. Moreover, based on these recent trends, there is no reason to suspect that this inclination will decrease at any time in the near future, despite the presence of international treaties making it a crime to trade the profitable trophies that can be collected from such animals. While these international laws are in place, there is great need of international pressure to enforce them. Should stricter laws be implemented? Is this a problem of lack of enforcement? Should the problem be dealt with on the poaching end or the commercial one? Whatever the solution, unless one is reached soon, the international community and its children will soon suffer a tragic loss as such majestic creatures fade into nothing more than a distant memory.
For more information, a full copy of the above referenced article can be found here.