Target: Mr. Jhou Shengxian, Head, Ministry of Environmental Protection, People’s Republic of China
Goal: Stop importing illegal timber from unsustainable forests
In recent years, China’s appetite for illegal timber has skyrocketed. Businesses are purchasing trees, mainly supplied by Cambodia, Laos, Thailand, and Madagascar, at record rates, and Interpol estimates the trade generates about $4 billion in profits every year.
There are serious issues with the support of the illegal timber trade. Areas where trees are being cut down have been nearly stripped, leaving nothing but dirt. Habitat areas for animals such as tigers, birds, and primates are quickly disappearing. Local communities in Cambodia and elsewhere are losing their ways of life. Without trees, the locals cannot harvest their own timber for themselves and their families.
Please urge the Chinese Ministry of Environmental Protection to regulate the illegal timber trade. In recent years, China’s territory has actually increased in forest cover due to re-forestation efforts and greater environmental protection laws. Hopefully, the government will be willing to negotiate with the United States, Russia, and other foreign powers to curb the amount of illegal timber coming through its borders.
Dear Mr Jhou,
Please re-evaluate your inaction regarding the illegal timber trade in your country. While the trade does produce massive revenue for China, it is ensuring environment and economic disasters in the coming years.
Countries like Cambodia and Laos that are supplying the timber are quickly running out of trees to harvest. The locals are losing their way of life and animals are losing their homes. Without trees, mudslides and other natural disasters are imminent. Plus, if there are no regulations placed on the trade, timber will soon run out and the businesses relying on the trade will collapse.
Please agree to speak with leaders from the United States, Russia, and other global powers to try and find a solution to the illegal timber trade. Thank you.
[Your Name Here]
Photo credit: Ganesh Paudel via WikiCommons