By Neena Gill (S&D), Catherine Bearder (ALDE), Sirpa Pietikäinen (PPE), Kathleen Van Brempt (S&D), Eva Kaili (S&D), Stefan Eck (GUE/NGL), Miriam Dalli (S&D), Seb Dance (S&D) Jonás Fernández (S&D), Victor Negrescu (S&D), Bart Staes (Verts/ALE), James Nicholson (ECR), Igor Šoltes (Verts/ALE)
Written declaration, under Rule 136 of Parliament’s Rules of Procedure, on trophy hunting
1. Earth has entered its sixth mass extinction phase, with animals now dying out at 100 times the normal rate. Estimates of the current rate of extinction range from 500 to 36 000 species per year.
2. This extinction crisis is caused primarily by human activities. Trophy hunting contributes to the loss of iconic species, and claims that proceeds from trophy hunting benefit conservation and local communities have been debunked by scientists.
3. The EU is a major source of trophy hunters, and a frequent destination for trophies. Between 2004 and 2013, over 27 000 trophies originating from Africa and America were imported into Europe. Clearly the current rules are insufficient and inadequately applied.
4. For permits to be issued, the authorities have to determine that the hunt was not detrimental to populations of any of the species listed in Annex B to the EU Wildlife Trade Regulations, and that it benefited the conservation of Annex A species. This is rarely adequately determined.
5. The Council and the Commission are called upon to examine the possibility of restricting all trophy imports, to ensure proper implementation of the rules by Member States, and to persuade countries that are issuing permits to trophy hunters without due consideration for the impacts of trophy hunting on conservation and animal welfare to discontinue this practice.
6. This declaration, together with the names of the signatories, is forwarded to the Council and the Commission.