Maritime Awards Society of Canada

Elisabeth Mann Borgese Ocean Lecture

* Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora
Dr Susan Lieberman
Director, International Policy, the Pew Environment Group, Washington
Tuesday 8th June (World Oceans Day): 7.00 p.m.
Room 105, Weldon Law Building, Dalhousie University
6061 University Avenue, Halifax
Reception to follow

The International Ocean Institute will be holding its sixth annual Elisabeth Mann Borgese Ocean Lecture at 7.00 p.m.on Tuesday 8th June to commemorate and celebrate the life and work of the late Professor Mann Borgese.  Dr Susan Lieberman, Director, International Policy, the Pew Environment Group, Washington will be speaking on Science versus Politics: Tales from CITES.  All are welcome at this Oceans Day public lecture and reception. Further information is available here or contact


This lecture will examine how politics and other issues can get in the way of governments making science-based policy decisions.  As an example, it will discuss the marine species proposals submitted for consideration at the March 2010 meeting of the Conference of the Parties to the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora (CITES).

In particular, Dr Lieberman will discuss the proposals to include the Atlantic bluefin tuna in CITES Appendix I, which would have prohibited international commercial trade, and the proposals to include eight species of sharks in CITES Appendix II, which would have regulated their international trade. None of these proposals was adopted — in spite of both strong science, and the support of the CITES Secretariat and IUCN for all the proposals, and of the FAO for the tuna proposal and all but one of the shark proposals.

Dr Lieberman will examine what this means for the future — not only for CITES itself, but for the use of international treaties and other measures to regulate trade in endangered, threatened, and vulnerable species.  Some of the questions she will answer are: What were the roles of the US, Canada, European Union, Japan, and China? What is the problem that CITES might have been able to address?  What does this mean for sharks and bluefin tuna? And what are the next steps?

The International Oceans Institute would like to thank the Ocean Management Research Network for its generous contribution to this event as a World Oceans Day activity. Thanks are also due to Dalhousie University’s Marine & Environmental Law Institute. For further information on this public lecture, please contact or consult

May 26, 2010 at 12:52 pm Comments (0)