CITES Secretary-General to Deliver Keynote at WAZA Conference

Date: 2017/09/07


John Scanlon will address the global scale of the illegal trade in wildlife.


CITES Secretary-General to Deliver Keynote at WAZA Conference


 The global scale of the illegal trade in wildlife and the impact it has on zoos and aquariums will be examined by CITES Secretary-General John Scanlon in a keynote address at the 72nd World Association of Zoos and Aquariums (WAZA) Annual Conference in Berlin.


Scanlon will discuss aspects of the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora (CITES) and examine its relationship to zoos and aquariums. His talk will be delivered on day three of the WAZA International Conference, which runs from 15-19 October.


The topic of Scanlon’s address aligns with the conference theme, “Our Time is Now.” The theme emphasises the pivotal role zoos and aquariums play in the fight to protect wildlife and wild spaces. Topics of discussion will include issues such as animal welfare, conservation and the social, cultural and physical benefits of zoos and aquariums.


“WAZA and CITES have a long-standing collaboration in support of the implementation of the Convention, and John Scanlon’s address comes at an important time,” said Doug Cress, Chief Executive Officer of WAZA. “Zoos and aquariums are already on the front lines of the fight against illegal trade, and they are often the only place to send seized or confiscated animals. That burden can be overwhelming, and WAZA and CITES need to work closely to become more effective going forward.”


Scanlon joined CITES as Secretary-General in 2010, and he has transformed the scale and scope of the Convention to meet the $23 billion USD threat of illegal wildlife trade head-on.


Before joining CITES, Scanlon was the Principal Adviser on Policy and Programme, and Team leader of the Strategic Implementation Team at the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP) and Director of the Environmental Law Centre with the IUCN. Prior to that he was Chief Executive of the Department of Environment, Heritage and Aboriginal Affairs in South Australia.


Other speakers at the WAZA Annual Conference include Jon Paul Rodriguez, chair of the IUCN Species Survival Commission and Darrel Webber, Chief Executive Officer of the Roundtable on Sustainable Palm Oil (RSPO), amongst many leading experts from zoos, aquariums and conservation organisations globally.  


The 72nd WAZA Annual Conference will take place at the Sofitel Berlin Kurfürstendamm Hotel and is hosted by the three facilities that comprise the Zoologischer Garten AG: Zoo Berlin, Aquarium Berlin and Tierpark Berlin. For further information and a detailed programme, please visit


WAZA is the global alliance of nearly 400 leading zoos and aquariums in over 50 countries. For more, visit or contact












> to overview