Environmental crimes encompass a broad range of illicit activities, including, inter alia, illegal trade in wildlife and wildlife products; smuggling of ozone-depleting substances (ODS); illicit trans-boundary movement, trade in and dumping of hazardous waste and chemicals; illegal, unregulated, and unreported fishing; and illegal logging and trade in timber. Environmental crime in all its forms is a serious and growing concern due to its dangerous implications to human health and the environment, including its broader impacts on development, global stability and international security.
Environmental crimes are increasingly affecting the quality of air, water and soil, threatening the survival of species and causing uncontrollable disasters. Environmental crimes also impose a security and safety threat to a large number of people and have a significant negative impact on development and rule of law.
ECI’s Environmental Crimes Program provides a forum for law enforcers and other stakeholders in the environment and natural resources management cycle to combat environmental crimes and its associated threats through research, awareness creation, and capacity building. The main areas of work under this program are:
- Public outreach, education and awareness on the adverse impacts of environmental crime.
- Research on the evolving nature and trends of environmental crimes in Africa.
- Capacity building for law enforcement agencies and other stakeholders on innovative strategies for prevention, detection, investigation and prosecution of environmental crimes.