The War on Wildlife Trade

Wildlife trade prohibition follows the logic of U.S. endangered species policy. The Endangered Species Act has created perverse results within the United States, and prohibitionist approaches to alcohol and drugs are also well-documented U.S. policy failures. The South African government is now questioning whether the top-down, prohibitionist approach is sustainable. As both South Africa and Namibia have demonstrated, the bottom-up approach to wildlife, based on market-oriented institutions with well-defined property rights, is a proven and successful conservation model. Perhaps this approach ought to be exported to replace the questionable global war on illegal wildlife trade.

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