Save Endangered Green-Haired Turtle from Extinction

Target: Josh Frydenberg, Minister for the Environment and Energy, Australia

Goal: Take stronger measures to ensure the long-term survival of the endangered Mary River turtle.

A turtle species native to Australia is in danger of extinction. The Mary River turtle is a unique Australian reptile known for growing green patches of algae on its head and shell and for its amazing ability to spend up to three days underwater without surfacing for air. Despite these amazing features, the turtle is also now recognized by the Zoological Society of London (ZSL) as one of the world’s 30 most endangered reptile species. As the population of Mary River turtles has been in decline for over four decades, it may be only a matter of time before they are gone forever.

Early reasons for the turtle’s decline were due to overexploitation in the pet trade. Because of the turtle’s docile nature, vast numbers of eggs were collected to satisfy consumer demand. While this trade is now illegal, the turtle continues to face other ecological threats, such as habitat loss caused by dam construction.

The Mary River turtle is a truly unique animal that needs our help to ensure its future survival. Sign this petition and demand that the Australian government take all necessary measures to help this turtle thrive once more.

PETITION LETTER:

Dear Minister Frydenberg,

Mary River turtles were once commonly spotted in their native Queensland habitat before the pet trade and river dam construction caused their numbers to plummet. Now they are recognized by the Zoological Society of London as one of the world’s most endangered reptiles, and unless conservation efforts are stepped up, they may disappear forever.

Because continued development on the Mary River threatens these vulnerable turtles, it is vital that what little healthy river habitat remains be protected against further human encroachment. While this little turtle may not be as well known as other Australian species, such as the koala or platypus, it deserves just as much respect and attention. Please ensure that all necessary measures are taken to ensure its continued survival.

Sincerely,

[Your Name Here]

Photo Credit: Pandiyan V

Demand Facebook Stop the Sale of Illegal Animal Parts

Target: Mark Zuckerberg, CEO of Facebook

Goal: Urge Facebook to remove content featuring illegal animal parts on group pages.

Cruel poachers have allegedly been given an international platform to sell their the fur, horns, and ivory of endangered animals. Facebook has been accused of displaying ads for well-known corporations on group pages run by notorious ivory and rhino horn traffickers from around the world. Advocates for wildlife conservation have complained that the company’s failure to crack down on this illicit trade is turning the social media platform into a online marketplace for poachers. Facebook has a responsibility to put an end to this illegal behavior.

Undercover investigators claim in their complaint to the Securities and Exchange Commission that the ads run were featured on the same pages that illegal ivory, tiger teeth, and other parts from endangered species were being openly marketed. Gretchen Peters, executive director of the Center for Illicit Networks and Transnational Organized Crime, says, “I have looked at thousands of posts containing ivory, and I am convinced that Facebook is literally facilitating the extinction of the elephant species.” Mark Zuckerberg, CEO of Facebook, has yet to comment on these serious allegations as the company deals with its latest scandal involving an alleged breach of private user data.

As one of 20 tech companies that recently signed on to the Global Coalition to End Wildlife Trafficking Online, Facebook must honor its agreement and ban this illegal content. Sign this petition to demand that the company act immediately to remove these ads and help officials punish those responsible for running them.

PETITION LETTER:

Dear Mr. Zuckerberg,

Facebook has recently come under fire for a number of reasons. Among these is the fact that undercover investigators have allegedly discovered scores of internationally banned wildlife products for sale in private and public groups on your site. Users have reported seeing endangered Bengal tiger pelts, rhino horns, and elephant ivory advertised for sale on what appears to be an online black market on your site.

It is time that Facebook stop giving these illegal traffickers a platform where they can initiate their sales. You must remove this content immediately and assist in all efforts to track down and severely punish those responsible for advertising animal parts from endangered animals.

Sincerely,

[Your Name Here]

Photo Credit: Facebook

Stop Tree Clearing To Save Koala Population

Target: His Excellency Paul de Jersey, Governor of Queensland, Australia

Goal: Save Queensland koala population by preserving as many trees as possible.

Queensland’s koala population is rapidly disappearing due to mass tree clearings. The trees are chopped down to make room for housing and infrastructure, robbing the species of their natural habitat and rendering them vulnerable to the high concentration of fast-moving vehicles, predatory dogs, and lack of food due to industrialization of the land.

Nearly 5,000 koalas died within the span of four years, from 2012 to 2016, and the death toll continues to rise to this day. Koalas cannot thrive or survive outside their natural habitat, and the trees not only provide their shelter and water supply, but the gumleaves they subsist on. The fewer trees there are, the fewer gumleaves, thus many koalas starve to death if they are not hit by motorists or attacked by dogs first.

The species will disappear completely within a few years’ time if the tree clearings are not curbed. We cannot allow these wonderful animals to vanish from this planet forever. Sign this petition to demand a stop to the tree clearings in Queensland.

PETITION LETTER:

Dear Governor de Jersey,

Queensland’s koala population may completely disappear in a few years’ time due to mass tree clearings. Many forests worth of trees have been cut down to make room for housing and infrastructure, robbing the species of their shelter and food source. This has caused nearly 5,000 koala deaths within four years, many of which were starvation-induced. Those that do not starve are killed by passing motorists or attacked by dogs.

You must stop the tree clearings before this species is gone for good. The koala is a vital species to Australia, and trees are vital to the ecosystem as a whole. You cannot allow industrialization to rob the planet of these wonderful animals. Ban the clearing of trees and give koalas a fighting chance.

Sincerely,

[Your Name Here]

Photo Credit: Erik Veland

Remove Anti-Animal Rights Politician from Job in “Wildlife Protection”

Target: Ryan Zinke, United States Secretary of the Interior

Goal: Remove avid anti-animal rights figure from a position that would give her complete control over the fate of our nation’s endangered species.

A woman who has spent most of her political career fighting against the protection of endangered species has been promoted to a leading role in the United States Department of the Interior. Despite her stance against endangered animals, Susan Combs will help oversee federal wildlife policy.

No endangered species will be safe under Combs’s rule. She has referred to endangered species lists as “incoming scud missiles.” These words and other harmful political stances have prevented Combs from receiving official Senate confirmation. However, Interior Secretary Ryan Zinke has found a loophole by awarding Combs an acting role in the interim.

Susan Combs will not protect natural landscapes of the United States. She will destroy them. Sign the petition to demand that she be removed from her position immediately.

PETITION LETTER:

Dear Secretary Zinke,

Susan Combs, a woman who has spent her entire political career fighting against endangered species, is now in charge of their “well being.” She has been given this duty despite Senate opposition.

Combs will not serve the American people’s interests. She will not do her duty to protect the United States and its natural landscapes. I demand she be removed from her position in the Department of the Interior immediately.

Sincerely,

[Your Name Here]

Photo Credit: Bureau of Land Management

Stop Deadly Plastic Waste Killing Whales and Other Wildlife

Target: Isabel Garcia Tejerina, Minister of Agriculture, Fishers, Food and Environment for Spain

Goal: Reduce the amount of plastic waste that is entering the ocean and endangering whales and other marine species.

A sperm whale measuring over 30 feet and weighing over six tons was found dead on a Spanish beach. Local officials determining the whale’s cause of death discovered that the animal had swallowed over 60 pounds’ worth of plastic garbage, including disposable bags and nets used in the fishing industry. It is believed this caused the whale to develop a deadly infection, leading to his tragic demise.

Plastic poses many risks to whales and other forms of marine wildlife. While large pieces of plastic waste can cause lethal harm, as seen in the case of this sperm whale, even microscopic plastic particles are contributing to a slow death by poisoning for countless animals. Combined with overfishing and other forms of pollution threatening our seas, the addition of even more plastic waste could spell doom for many vulnerable species, including whales.

All countries have a responsibility to help clean up the ocean and stop contributing to the plastic waste epidemic. Sign this petition to urge the Spanish government to enact stronger laws and cut down on the amount of disposable garbage entering the sea.

PETITION LETTER:

Dear Minister Tejerina,

Government officials in Murcia have determined that the official cause of death for a sperm whale discovered on a regional beach was an intestinal infection caused by the whale’s ingestion of nearly 30 kilograms worth of plastic waste. Among the recovered garbage were scores of disposable bags, as well as nets and ropes widely used in the fishing industry. Combined, this human-produced waste contributed to the young sperm whale’s untimely death, and it is poisoning countless more creatures worldwide.

You must take necessary measures to enact stronger laws and regulations on plastic waste, as well as to limit the amount of disposable garbage that is entering Spanish waterways. Spain could pave the way to a more environmentally friendly future by eliminating disposable plastic bags nationwide and requiring that fishermen use equipment that is less harmful to wildlife. Please do your part to help ensure that the oceans will remain a haven for many living creatures for generations to come.

Sincerely,

[Your Name Here]

Photo Credit: Richard Humphrey

Stop Allowing Hunters to Gun Down Wolves with Assault Rifles

Target: Bill Walker, Governor of Alaska

Goal: Stop hunters from using assault rifles to kill major predators like wolves by creating a no-kill buffer around Denali National Park.

Wolves are being killed at near record-high numbers in the area around Denali National Park, prompting officials from Alaska’s Department of Fish and Game (DFG) to shorten its annual wolf hunting season. While the DFG claims that the wolf population is not at risk, wildlife experts have expressed concerns about the state’s lax hunting regulations and the fact that these predators are increasingly being gunned down in large numbers by hunters using assault rifles on highly mobile snow machines. They fear it may be only a matter of time before the iconic wolves of Denali are hunted to extinction.

While shortening the wolf hunting season will help prevent more senseless killings, it cannot reverse the damage already done. If the wolves were to go extinct, this would not only be disastrous for the ecosystem– it would likely hurt Alaska’s economy as well. Denali National Park is the state’s biggest tourism draw, with many people visiting simply to get a chance to see the wolves in their natural habitat.

We must protect Alaska’s wolves for the future. Sign this petition to demand a no-kill buffer zone around Denali National Park and a statewide ban on using assault rifles to target major predator species, including wolves.

PETITION LETTER:

Dear Governor Walker,

Denali National Park is your state’s largest source of tourism revenue, drawing thousands of wildlife-lovers annually. Many of these visitors come simply to see wolves in their natural habitat, a sight that has vanished in so many other parts of the world. Yet thanks to lax regulations on predator control in Alaska, the wolves may soon disappear from Denali as well.

Large predatory species, such as wolves, play a pivotal role in ecosystems by managing herbivore populations. When they are killed at unsustainable rates, as is happening in the area around Denali and statewide, the entire ecology of the region is negatively impacted. That is why we are urging you to establish a no-kill area around Denali National Park, and to change hunting regulations to prohibit the use of high-powered assault rifles against large predators, including wolves.

Sincerely,

[Your Name Here]

Photo Credit: D. Kopshever/National Park Service

Trump, Tell Unethical EPA Chief ‘You’re Fired!’

Target: Donald Trump, President of the United States

Goal: Remove the EPA administrator for ethics violations.

Seemingly every day, more details emerge about the egregious ethics violations committed by EPA head Scott Pruitt. With this continuous stream of allegations, more demands for Pruitt’s resignation or firing emerge as well. Recently, over 60 members of Congress sent a letter to President Trump calling for the embattled EPA chief’s resignation.

Most of the allegations swirl around gross financial abuse of organizational funds, including millions of dollars in extravagant travel expenses, office furniture worth more than the annual salary of the average American worker, use of emergency vehicles as ‘escorts’ to a  lavish restaurant, and a security detail that far eclipses security for the president himself.

Even more troubling , however, are the actions that have a direct impact on the future of a vital American agency. In line with the unprecedented number of lobbyists now circling the EPA, Pruitt rented a luxury room from a well-known lobbyist in the energy industry that falls under EPA regulation. When concerned EPA employees exposed these abuses, they were punished with demotion.

While other EPA employees categorize Pruitt’s tenure as a “low point,” President Trump continues a wholehearted defense of his foot soldier in unprecedented assaults on environmentalism. Sign this petition to hold the president to his campaign promise of “draining the swamp.”

PETITION LETTER:

Dear President Trump,

‘Drain the swamp.’

This was one of your most consistent and passionate rally cries. With your continued defense of EPA Administrator Scott Pruitt, you have broken this pledge.

Will you stand in support of someone who views office furniture as more valuable than a year’s worth of work from the average American? Will you pat the back of an individual who believes he is entitled to travel, accommodations, and security rivaling that of the president? Will you pledge your allegiance to a ‘swamp creature’ who uses his influence and taxpayer dollars to advance his own interests, or will you pledge allegiance to the United States of America and the individuals who elected you to be ‘their’ champion?

The choice is clear. Back Pruitt, or back the people.

Sincerely,

[Your Name Here]

Photo Credit: Gage Skidmore

Demand Michigan Reject Nestle’s Exploitative Water Program

Target: Rick Snyder, Governor of Michigan

Goal: Demand that Michigan reject the proposed water extraction program by Nestle.

Nestle has plans to build a water extraction plant in Michigan, and when the public was questioned for approval, over 80,000 negative comments came in. The plant was still approved by the state legislature to begin construction later this year. There were less than 100 total approvals of the plant submitted through public comment, so why is Michigan still moving forward with the plant?

Nestle is a corporation known for destroying whatever environment it touches. Counties and states from all over the country have previously rejected Nestle’s plan for bottling plants, leaving them to search for whoever will say yes. Unfortunately for the people of Michigan, who are still recovering from the water crisis, Michigan said yes. Stand with us and sign the petition below demanding Michigan reject this plant before it’s too late.

PETITION LETTER:

Dear Governor Snyder,

Michigan has been through enough in the last few years in regards to water quality. The state finally ended its free water bottle program and declared the water in Flint safe to drink again. These are landmark actions of progress that show the state is moving forward.

So, why are you so content on poisoning the water again? Nestle is known for polluting the environment it drills into, and Michigan is already a sensitive environment. There’s no good reason to destroy a landscape that is currently recovering from previous damage. We demand you stand on the right side of history and reject Nestle’s proposal. The people of Michigan have spoken, and it’s time to listen.

Sincerely,

[Your Name Here]

Photo Credit: Alan Murray-Rust

Don’t Give Endangered Lands to Harmful Corporations

Target: Siti Nurbaya Bakar, Minister of Environment and Forestry, Indonesia

Goal: Don’t give endangered lands to companies with rich histories of environmental degradation.

Endangered land in Indonesia, and all of the habitats and species that come with it, may soon be destroyed. The government of Indonesia is planning to complete a “land swap” with peat companies. This swap will take untouched, yet severely endangered, natural lands and throw them into the hands of companies that have a proven history of environmental degradation.

This proposed swap comes after severe fires destroyed much of the nation’s peatlands. These fires released extremely dangerous amounts of carbon into the air. Since then, Indonesia has attempted to regulate peatlands. This latest swap is part of these efforts. However, this land swap will still result in environmental damage, just in new areas.

The land affected is estimated to be the size of Lebanon. Sign the petition to demand that this land be protected. Ask Indonesia’s government to scrap plans for the proposed land swap.

PETITION LETTER:

Dear Minister Bakar,

Land the size of Lebanon, untouched by deforestation and industrialization, may soon be destroyed in your government’s proposed “land swap” with corporations. Though this land swap is part of your government’s efforts to regulate the exploitation of peatlands, this move will still inflict damage on your environment. The companies you are proposed to swap with have a history of unsustainable practices.

The shrinking, untouched land of your nation must be protected. I demand that you and your government throw out the proposed plans to swap Indonesia’s endangered lands and natural habitats.

Sincerely,

[Your Name Here]

Photo Credit: Alasdair MacDonald

President Trump: Do Not End Protections for Hundreds of Threatened Species

Target: Donald Trump, President of the United States

Goal: Do not eliminate rule granting protections to nearly 300 threatened species, who will otherwise face the risk of extinction.

Almost 300 species classified as threatened under the Endangered Species Act may lose their protections entirely if a proposed rule submitted by the U.S. Department of the Interior passes. Targeted species include southern sea otters, northern spotted owls, piping plovers, red knots, Yosemite toads, delta smelt, Santa Catalina Island foxes, and gopher tortoises. This proposed rule would affect mammals, birds, fish, and plants throughout the entire country, and would therefore be sure to have dire consequences.

The rule seeks to undo vital regulations that have been in place for 40 years, which grant these severely threatened species with the same level of protection as those on the Endangered Species List. Protections can only be loosened for any of these species if the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service deems it warranted. However, Endangered Species Director of the Center for Biological Diversity Noah Greenwald says if this new rule is enacted, it “could be the end for iconic wildlife like the northern spotted owl and southern sea otter. Trump is erasing America’s natural heritage to make his friends richer and allow polluters to ravage our environment.” He says, “The Trump administration just issued a death sentence to nearly 300 threatened species.” Sign below to demand that this wildlife be saved.

PETITION LETTER:

Dear President Trump,

The almost 300 threatened species of wildlife across the country that are currently afforded the same level as protections as those listed as endangered must remain protected. Iconic animals like the southern sea otter and northern spotted owl are two of many that will face extinction if the new rule proposed by the Department of the Interior is enacted and their protections are lost. The consequences of this proposed rule are dire and must not be allowed to occur.

As Noah Greenwald, the endangered species director at the Center for Biological Diversity, states, “If these critical protections for threatened species are eliminated, Trump will go down in history as the extinction president. This administration’s assault on critical safeguards for our air, water, and wildlife is not supported by the American public. It threatens to undo decades of progress towards improving the health of the environment for people and wildlife alike.” I urge you not to allow this to happen. Please preserve the crucial decades-old regulations protecting these threatened species.

Sincerely,

[Your Name Here]

Photo Credit: U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service – Pacific Region