Stopping IWT in Colombia

Unknown profit model, Unknown IP model, Validation Phase, Open to new members
Using an app to inform, train and report IWT (Illegal Wildlife Traffic) in Colombia through law enforcement and citizen science.

The Problem

Currently in Colombia illegal wildlife traffic (IWT) is emerging due to new infrastructure such as roads and extractive activities (mining and deforestation). However law enforcement to fight against this crime is deficient. Due to lack of law enforcement, IWT is perceived as an activity of low risk and high profit crime. National authorities such as environmental police are in a constant relocation. It means that police officer might go to places where she/he has never been before. This can have consequences in order to implement law because IWT is different from every region in Colombia. The lack of knowledge presented in IWT is significant. This has implications when it comes to attacking this environmental problem. Additionally, tourists and citizens do not take into account that this crime is a reality that is endangering the survival of Colombian biodiversity. This new app will be updated with verified information about IWT in every region, for example in the coast, our app will have information related with sea turtles, sharks and macro-invertebrates. On the other hand, in the Amazon it will contain information about frogs, apes, birds and mammals. This innovation idea will have a positive impact on endangered natural populations in which IWT has emerged a principal threat for their survival.

Our Proposal

First phase: we will initiate a contact with the national police and regional authorities to obtain the information of IWT in Colombia. At the same time, we will create a database for the application so that we can incorporate available information on IWT. By the same time we will prepare training training material for environmental authorities in order to fill the information gaps of IWT and demand reduction of products related to IWT. Second phase: With the information obtained in the regions that present IWT, we will create a catalog of information concerning to national authorities in Colombia. In this aspect, information will be available so that the staff from national authorities (new or old) can obtain the necessary tools for the implementation of the law and in this way combat IWT. Final phase: We will oversee the implementation of the new app. Besides, we will launch a campaign in social media networks to promote this and the fight against IWT.

We Assume that...

We assume that local vendors do not take environmental laws seriously. In this project we will link them, giving them an opportunity so that they can substitute illegal materials for legal ones.

Police officers are not well trained. With the use of this app, they will have the tools and knowledge necessary to combat this crime depending on biodiversity of each region within Colombia.

Tourists do not know what kind of material they are buying. By using this new app, they will understand it as an illicit business which is leading a species to extinction.

Constraints to Overcome

One of the main barriers is that the IWT is underestimated with regard to other traffic crimes such as weapons and drugs. People do not know that buying animals or products from them is an illegal activity that puts the survival of these species at risk. For these reasons, we consider that misinformation is one of our great barriers.

Current Work

Keep working to obtain data gathering of IWT in Colombia. Hire technological support for the app.

Current Needs

Find a data scientist who develops a code to identify online traffic and integrate this data into the work of the environmental police.