Phones Out in the Fight Against Poaching
Did you know that Namibia has an app to fight poaching? A group of Namibians decided that they were tired of just complaining about poaching and other crimes against the environment and went to work to form a company who have brought to market an app which acts as a tool in the fight against poaching.
This couldn’t come at a more critical time, as the International Anti-Poaching Foundation puts it, “Wildlife crime is sweeping the planet. The illegal trafficking of wildlife is now one of the world’s largest criminal industries.” Without urgent action we risk the preservation of our natural world as entire ecosystems are threatened. With each species being part of the functioning of an ecosystem, species loss or biodiversity loss could have mammoth and dire consequences for the human race.
Now here in Namibia, ISAP is a non-profit organization that supports the fight against poaching. Their organization developed a smartphone app which members of the public can download onto their phone. Now, with this app, any person in Namibia can report dubious activity in real time. The information goes to a call centre where it is distributed to the people that can do something with it, be that the police, the Ministry of Environment and Tourism or the Ministry of Fisheries for example.
What this means is that the public is now the frontline defense in the fight against poaching.
What’s more, it’s working. The organization has infiltrated poaching rings in Namibia, they have rescued endangered animals and delivered them to rehabilitation centres and conservationists that can ensure they are rehabilitated and released back into the wild. Click here to see the article MYD Earth did on a Pangolin rescue operation that ISAP organized : Good News In Namibian Conservation
99FM’s MYD Earth spoke to Tinus Hansen, the Director of Marketing and Operations at ISAP, who shared with us that ISAP now also has an SMS number where members of the public can report crimes against the environment. That number is 55555.
What’s more, thanks to corporate sponsors O&L, ISAP are now offering a reward to people to report poaching that leads to the arrest of environmental criminals.
For the full interview with Tinus Hansen from ISAP where we learnt all about who ISAP is, what they do and their successes in catching poachers, take a listen here :