SPCA and World Animal Protection ANZ's letter to Environment Minister David Parker
UNEA Resolution on the Animal Welfare - Environment - Sustainable Development Nexus
Tēnā koe Minister Parker,
The Royal New Zealand Society of the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (SPCA) and World Animal Protection New Zealand, together representing many tens of thousands of supporters, are writing to you to request your support for a critical United Nations Environment Assembly (UNEA) Resolution: “Animal Welfare – Environment – Sustainable Development Nexus.”
The resolution has been submitted by the Government of Ghana along with six other UN Member States (Senegal, Burkina Faso, Ethiopia, Democratic Republic of Congo, South Sudan and Pakistan) for adoption at the fifth session of the United Nations Environment Assembly (UNEA-5.2) taking place from 28th February to 2nd March 2022.
The Resolution calls on the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP) Executive Director to prepare a report exploring the connections between animals, the environment and sustainable development. Additionally, the Resolution calls on member states to protect wildlife and other non-human animals in acknowledgement of the growing consensus that the way we treat animals and their habitats are significantly linked with some of the most significant challenges the global community faces today—including the risk of new and emerging infectious zoonotic diseases, mitigating climate change and other environmental threats, and ensuring secure and sustainable food systems.
The proposed resolution does not aim to add animal welfare to UNEP’s mandate but rather points out that analysis of the causal linkages that exist between animals, the environment and sustainable development can assist UNEP to meet its strategic goals. There is increasing evidence that considering animals in our decisions can prevent future pandemics, motivate conservation and environmental protection, and sustain livelihoods— as well as being an important concern of citizens across the globe. We are working within a strong coalition of NGOs across the Tasman and around the world to promote this Resolution.
We note that Aotearoa New Zealand is already a leader in recognising the links between animals, the environment and sustainable farming, which can be seen for example in the move away from destructive practices like intensive winter grazing and towards sustainable land use practices such as regenerative agriculture.
We would be grateful if the government of Aotearoa New Zealand would consider supporting the resolution or join as a co-sponsor.
SPCA is more than happy to help with any questions or assistance, and we are available for a meeting to discuss this further with you and your officials. Thank you for your consideration.
Māua noa, nā
Dr Arnja Dale - SPCA Chief Scientific Officer
Ben Pearson - World Animal Protection ANZ Interim Country Director