Stop Killing of Jaguars for Construction

Target: Xi Jinping, President of China

Goal: Stop China’s use of endangered jaguars’ body parts for their construction projects.

The South American jaguar population is on a rapid decline, and Chinese construction projects have just been uncovered as the main reason. Endangered animal parts such as bones, fangs, and skins have been in high demand in China due to their alleged medicinal properties, particularly the organs of the jaguar and other big cats. Over 100 jaguars have been killed in less than a year to provide these parts.

We cannot let this continue. Not only is the trade and use of animal body parts unethical and technically illegal, the loss of any species is detrimental to the ecosystem. Jaguars are beautiful and graceful animals who have already been facing endangerment for years, and now they could disappear completely thanks to these projects. Worse, South America is enabling the loss of this species via an illegal trade route to China, providing them with the parts they claim to need.

In order to stop the illegal trade of jaguar body parts and save the species, we must attack the root of the problem. Sign this petition to demand China stop their purchase of jaguar parts and revise their construction plans to be more ethical and environmentally friendly.

PETITION LETTER:

Dear President Xi,

Construction projects in China are the root of the near-extinction of South America’s jaguar population. Construction workers are purchasing the skin, bones, and fangs of jaguars through an illegal trade route, claiming the need for the parts’ medicinal properties. This is both unethical and dangerous, as the loss of the species will damage South America’s ecosystem.

You must call for a ban on the purchase of jaguar parts immediately. Jaguars deserve better than to be killed and chopped up for parts, especially parts whose medicinal properties may very well just be a myth. Furthermore, these projects must be revised to comply with environmental protection standards overall. Animals should not have to die for progress and development.

Sincerely,

[Your Name Here]

Photo Credit: cmart29

Stop Cruel Plan to Slaughter Pigs Faster

Target: Sonny Ramaswamy, Director of USDA National Institute of Food and Agriculture

Goal: Stop proposal that would lead to more painful deaths for slaughtered pigs.

The United States Department of Agriculture’s (USDA) proposed New Swine Slaughter Inspection System would remove speed limits at pig slaughterhouses. This means slaughterhouses can increase production even more, totaling up to 1,300 pigs or more per hour, an increase from the average 1,100 every hour today. This is problematic for animal and workers’ welfare.

Workers might resort to excess force using electric prods when moving animals down the line. Furthermore, pigs might not be stunned efficiently, meaning they could become conscious during the killing process. Workers might handle the animals more roughly because they are being pressured to work more in order to kill more pigs in a day. This proposal mirrors the National Chicken Council’s petition to speed up poultry slaughter, which was rejected by the USDA.

Slaughtering pigs is already an inhumane act, and this new proposal to remove speed slaughter limits would impose even harsher conditions for animals. Sign the petition below to urge the USDA to stop the proposal and consider animal welfare.

PETITION LETTER:

Dear Mr. Ramaswamy,

As the Director of the National Institude of Food and Agriculture, you have a responsibility to help solve challenges regarding food and agriculture. Recently, the USDA announced a New Swine Slaughter Inspection System, which would remove the speed limit of killing pigs in slaughterhouses. This would mean an increase from 1,100 pigs to 1,300 pigs per hour. This might also mean pigs are not stunned properly, resulting in pigs gaining consciousness during slaughter. Workers might feel the need to use excessive force through electric prods and rough handling to speed up slaughter and meet daily goals.

There is no need for a greater production from slaughterhouses. Already, they produce over 120 million pigs per year to feed the meat industry. We should be taking measures to reduce our carbon footprint through less meat consumption and looking into plant-based alternatives. Faster slaughter speeds will not only overwork slaughterhouse employees, they will jeopardize animal welfare. USDA has already rejected the National Chicken Council’s proposal to speed up poultry slaughter, and I hope USDA does the same for pigs. It would be hypocritical and unjust for you to pass a proposal similar to one that was rejected. I hope that you speak out against this new proposal and help protect animal welfare.

Sincerely,

[Your Name Here]

Photo Credit: PxHere

Investigate Suspicious Death of Imprisoned Wildlife Advocate

Target: Seyyed Alireza Avaei, Iran Minister of Justice

Goal: Urge Iranian authorities to conduct a fair investigation into alleged suicide by imprisoned conservationist.

Iranian-Canadian conservationist Seyed Emami was found dead in a high-security prison, where he allegedly committed suicide. However, his family and the United Nations Commissioner for Human Rights suspect foul play and are urging Iranian authorities to conduct a non-biased investigation to uncover the truth. The tension between conservatives and other more progressive groups have led to many disputes, including other environmentalists’ arrests around the same time as Emami.

A sociology professor and director of the private environmental organization Persian Wildlife Heritage Foundation, Emami pursued social and environmental changes in Iran. He was accused of being a spy for the United States and Israel. Authorities claimed that the cameras installed by his foundation to track rare animals like the Persian leopard were actually being used to monitor Iranian missile activities and report to foreigners. Emami’s sons claim that these charges are ridiculous, especially since the cameras are cheap, can be bought anywhere, and could only capture up to 25 meters or 82 feet.

After his funeral, a deputy prosecutor revealed footage from the prison to Emami’s sons. In it, he is seen making the bed, putting a shirt around his neck, and going into the bathroom. Seven hours later they bring him out dead. His sons suspect foul play because the prison is high security and they feel that the whole incident was staged. Furthermore, Emami’s character was positive and unrelenting, and suicide would not have be an option, according to his sons.

Environmentalists should not be imprisoned on weak charges and be put in danger. Urge the Iranian authorities to conduct a fair investigation into his death. This might prevent further deaths for the six other environmentalists being detained with no access to legal council should it be revealed that authorities were involved in his death. Protect rights of people who are only trying to protect the environment; people who serve the public and the environment.

PETITION LETTER:

Dear Mr. Avaei,

An Iranian conservationist in prison was recently pronounced dead, allegedly having committed suicide in a high-security prison. Seyed Emami was a professor of sociology and director of the environmental organization Persian Wildlife Foundation. He was charged on suspicion of being a spy for the United States and Israel because of the cameras his foundation installed to monitor rare animals such as the Persian leopard. Authorities claimed that these cameras were actually being used to record Iranian missile activities and that these records were being reported to foreigners.

These weak charges are hardly cause for arrest, and furthermore, his family and even the United Nations Commissioner for Human Rights suspects foul play. Surveillance revealed that he made his bed, put on a shirt around his neck, and then brought out dead seven hours later. The incident seemed staged, according to his family. The UN is urging Iranian authorities to conduct a fair investigation into Emami’s death, something he deserves. He believed in protecting the environment and the public, and creating positive changes in Iran.

Mr. Avaei, show the rest of the world that Iran has a judiciary system that respects its citizens and allows them a fair trial. Help uncover the truth behind Emami’s death if there was foul play, and conduct a fair investigation.

Sincerely,

[Your Name Here]

Photo Credit: Seyed Emami family

Protect the Pacific Walrus Under the Endangered Species Act

Target: Donald Trump, President of the United States

Goal: Do not deny the Pacific walrus endangered species protections.

The Pacific walrus is in increasing danger of losing its habitat, but is being denied protections under the law. Arctic sea ice coverage is at a record low, and the walrus relies on this ice to survive. In spite of this, the Trump Administration reversed the 2011 decision to protect the Pacific walrus under the Endangered Species Act, and is now being sued by the Center for Biological Diversity.

As an attorney for the Center for Biological Diversity states, “The Trump Administration’s outrageous reversal is a deathblow for the Pacific walrus.” The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service found the walrus worthy of protection in 2011. Center officials concluded, based on evidence of climate change causing the dramatic disappearance of sea ice and a subsequent decline in the Pacific walrus population, that the species could face extinction in the foreseeable future. Listing these walruses as endangered would help protect their habitat, which is especially vital as the Trump Administration is also proposing to allow offshore drilling for oil and gas in the seas where the Pacific walrus lives. Sign below to demand that plans to put the Pacific walrus on the Endangered Species list be reinstated.

PETITION LETTER:

Dear President Trump,

Over six years ago it was determined that the Pacific walrus was worthy of being included on the Endangered Species list due to the rapid disappearance of its habitat. Since then, threats have only worsened for the Pacific walrus. The sea ice that it relies on to survive is at a record low. Yet, under your administration, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service has completely reversed its position and denied protection to these animals.

Currently, your administration faces a lawsuit from the Center for Biological Diversity, which seeks to protect and preserve these innocent creatures. As an attorney with the Center said in a statement, “The Trump Administration’s outrageous reversal is a deathblow for the Pacific walrus. Arctic ice is disappearing at a record rate, and walruses are suffering catastrophic habitat loss. Rather than ignoring the science, the administration needs to give these magnificent creatures the protection they desperately need to survive which they legally deserve.” I urge you to heed her words, and to ensure that the Pacific walrus is granted protections under the Endangered Species Act.

Sincerely,

[Your Name Here]

Photo Credit: Joel Garlich Miller, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service

Trump Tricked Us – Oppose His Quiet Plan to Allow Trophy Hunting

Target: Donald Trump, President of the United States

Goal: Do not make the U.S. complicit in the brutal killing of elephants for profit by allowing elephant trophies to be imported.

Without publicizing it, the Trump administration has decided to lift a ban on importing elephant trophies, permitting these cruelly sport-hunted items from certain African countries into the U.S. “on a case-by-case basis.” This move comes mere months after — amidst widespread uproar — Trump announced that he would pause the rollback of this important ban, tweeting that he “will be very hard pressed to change [his] mind that this horror show in any way helps conservation of elephants or any other animal.”

In the past Trump stated, “I didn’t want elephants killed and stuffed and have the tusks brought back into this [country].” He also expressed skepticism about the idea that hunting promotes conservation efforts — a skepticism shared by activists and conservationists, who say that it is unlikely that fees paid by big game hunters truly make it to the wildlife agencies they are meant to support. The quiet decision to lift this ban will be hugely damaging to elephant conservation efforts. Sign below to demand that the ban on importing elephant trophies remains in place.

PETITION LETTER:

Dear President Trump,

The rollback of the ban on importing elephant trophies is unacceptable and dangerous. It not only encourages the brutal killing of innocent and endangered elephants for profit, it also makes the U.S. complicit in that brutality. Additionally, conservation activists are doubtful that big game hunting fees actually benefit conservation and make it to the organizations they are intended to.

You expressed similar skepticism yourself, and have publicly stated your opposition to lifting the ban. You said that you “didn’t want elephants killed and stuffed and have the tusks brought back,” and that you would be “very hard pressed to change [your] mind that this horror show in any way helps conservation of elephants or any other animal.” I urge you to stand by those statements. Please help save innocent and endangered elephants, and do not allow the ban on the importation of elephant trophies to be lifted.

Sincerely,

[Your Name Here]

Stop the Mass Slaughter of Rattlesnakes at Festival

Target: Greg Abbott, Governor of Texas

Goal: Put an end to a cruel snake slaughtering event at an annual festival.

For the 60th year, people will flock to Sweetwater, Texas to witness a bloody spectacle in which thousands of rattlesnakes held in a pit will be beheaded and skinned before their eyes. There is no reason behind this senseless killing, and it is time that this sick festival be brought at last to an end.

The Sweetwater Jaycees Festival, held by the United States Junior Chamber, says that its so-called Rattlesnake Roundup is necessary to control the “enormous snake populations” found in and around Sweetwater. However, there is no scientific backing to these claims, and once these snakes are captured, they are kept in tiny boxes without food for weeks while they await their ultimate demise during the festival’s main event.

While the event organizers claim that the festival provides a necessary boost to the local economy each year, there must be a way to encourage tourism to the area without the torturing and killing of innocent snakes. Sign this petition to demand that the Rattlesnake Roundup be ended once and for all.

PETITION LETTER:

Dear Governor Abbott,

This year marks the 60th anniversary of the first Rattlesnake Roundup held in Sweetwater, Texas. Each year since then, thousands of snakes have died during a senseless bloodbath as part of the Sweetwater Jaycees Festival. It far past time that this sick tradition be brought to an end.

Rattlesnakes are a natural part of the environment in Texas and do not need to be ‘controlled’ through mass roundups or killings. They do not deserve to be beheaded alive and skinned for the enjoyment of onlookers. That is why we urge you to intervene and tell the event organizers that this barbaric mass slaughter has no place in the 21st century.

Sincerely,

[Your Name Here]

Photo Credit: H. Krisp

Don’t Hunt and Slaughter Wild Bobcats

Target: Cameron F. Clark, Director, Indiana Department of Natural Resources

Goal: Abandon plans to hunt Indiana’s wild bobcats.

Wild bobcats in Indiana may soon be slaughtered. The state’s Department of Natural Resources is proposing a hunting and trapping season for the wild breed of cat.

The wild bobcat was once an endangered species. However, its population has grown. Nevertheless, an open hunting season of the animal will surely deplete its numbers until it once again faces a crisis. All of the recovery that has been made in recent years will be erased.

The wild bobcat is a vulnerable species and must be protected. Sign the petition to demand that the state government of Indiana abandon plans to openly hunt and slaughter bobcats.

PETITION LETTER:

Dear Mr. Clark,

The wild bobcats of your state tell the story of conservationists’ success. Once endangered, now their population has thrived. However, your organization advocates for an open hunting and trapping season for these animals. Should this be done, all progress will be lost.

The bobcats have neither attacked pets nor humans. Even attacks on livestock are rare. There is no reason to condemn them to slaughter and set their population back to endangered status once more. I demand that you abandon plans to hunt and trap wild bobcats.

Sincerely,

[Your Name Here]

Photo Credit: docentjoyce

Protect Recently Discovered Penguin Colony

Target: Jim Kurth, Director of the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service

Goal: Protect hidden colony of penguins in Antarctica in order to save the species.

A hidden colony of Adélie penguins was recently found on the Danger Islands of Antarctica, shortly after concern swept the ecological field regarding general penguin endangerment. Approximately 1.5 million penguins were discovered, enough to help downgrade the species to vulnerable and possibly save them from impending extinction within decades.

While this discovery is extremely welcome news, scientists are concerned that the existence of this colony alone will be enough for officials to declare the species safe. In truth, the protection of the area itself is also a major factor, as such spaces can easily fall victim to climate change-related dangers or overfishing. At the present, Danger Islands are largely safe from the effects of climate change and see very little human interaction. But the continued safety of this area requires funding and focus to maintain.

The discovery of this penguin colony is only one step in protecting the species. We must support the preservation of Danger Islands as a legally enforceable marine-protected area. Sign this petition to ensure that these birds will remain safe and their population healthy.

PETITION LETTER:

Dear Director Kurth,

A colony of 1.5 million Adélie penguins has been discovered on the Danger Islands of Antarctica, answering the concern about the general endangerment of penguins on the continent. As of right now, the area is least suspect to climate change complications and sees very little human interaction.

But conservationists and scientists cannot rest easy. Despite the size of the colony and the safety of the area, it will not remain so without hard work and funding to ensure that Danger Islands will be a legally protected safe zone. We cannot simply assume that humans will stay away or that climate change will never touch them. You must help fund the preservation of Danger Islands as a legal safe space to protect this colony and ensure the survival of the species.

Sincerely,

[Your Name Here]

Photo Credit: Jason Auch