“Don’t Buy Trouble” is the name of a new Danida funded anti-wildlife trafficking campaign at Noi Bai Airport in Hanoi, raising awareness among travellers regarding wildlife protection and warning them that trade in wildlife products could result in fines and prosecution.
Recently members of the Vietnamese Government, environmental enforcement agencies, conservation NGOs, airport authorities and national media gathered for the launch of a new anti-wildlife trafficking campaign at the Noi Bai airport in Ha Noi.
The “Don’t Buy Trouble” campaign consists of 15 evocative posters depicting some of Vietnam’s most common illegally traded species, including Tiger, Asiatic bear, Elephant, Rhinoceros, Marine turtle, and Pangolin. The posters warn that such species are protected by law and that trade in derived products could result in fines and/or prosecution. Also included in the exhibit is a permanent glass case display showing replicas of common illegal wildlife products. The display will be placed in the departures boarding area, which will allow passengers waiting for flights to peruse information on wildlife trade in the region.
Vietnam, like other countries in Southeast Asia, has in recent years become both a source, a consumer, and a conduit of illegally traded wildlife products, with networks stretching worldwide. With 900 species threatened by extinction, the situation in Vietnam is critical, and the growing illegal wildlife trade is one of the biggest threats. “Raising awareness among travellers regarding wildlife protection laws will be essential in halting this illegal and unsustainable trade that is pushing many species towards extinction in Vietnam and across Southeast Asia,” said Mr. Phạm Văn Linh, Vice Chairman of the Central Committee for Communications and Education (CCCE), the lead organizer of the airport campaign.
As wildlife products are commonly trafficked through airports worldwide, these are ideal locations for educating people about the problem. Noi Bai is Vietnam’s largest international airport in the north¬, serving nearly 4 million passengers annually, and was therefore chosen as the prime location in the battle against the regional illicit wildlife trade. The wildlife trade posters will be posted around the airport until May 2011, as colourful reminders to national and international travellers alike to think twice before purchasing protected wildlife.
The “Don’t Buy Trouble” campaign was first introduced at New Delhi’s domestic and international airports in 2008 with great success. The new exhibit at Noi Bai is one of the activities under a four-year Wildlife Trade Campaign funded by Danida and led by TRAFFIC and WWF aiming to raise awareness and change consumer behaviour regarding wildlife consumption.