International Big Cat Alliance

On March 1, 2024, India’s Environment Ministry secured Cabinet approval to institute an International Big Cat Alliance (IBCA) headquartered in New Delhi. The intergovernmental coalition mimics the International Solar Alliance model pioneered by India for boosting global tiger conservation efforts.

Genesis

The IBCA proposal emerged at the St. Petersburg Tiger Summit in 2010 seeking global collaboration to double wild tiger numbers by 2022.

At the Second Asia Ministerial Conference on Tiger Conservation in 2022 hosted by India, ministers from tiger range countries advocated an IBCA supporting knowledge exchanges and transboundary projects protecting Asia’s iconic apex predator synonymous with healthy ecosystems.

Objectives

As a coordination platform, the IBCA aims to facilitate:

  • Transboundary monitoring to manage border forests/corridors better
  • Channelize conservation investments into priority tiger habitats
  • Boost scientific data collection and monitoring technologies access
  • Curtail wildlife trafficking through enforcement coordination
  • Exchange expertise on community stewardship models and eco-tourism

The alliance connects governments with multilateral agencies, corporations, experts and local communities to accelerate ambitious tiger recovery goals.

India’s Leadership

Home to over 50% of global wild tigers, India has demonstrated exemplary leadership in doubling tiger numbers from 2006-2019 through its grassroots-focused Project Tiger initiative.

The Environment Minister highlighted that India’s conservation success, specifically replicable practices around prey, habitat and local livelihoods security, can inform tiger range nations through the IBCA platform.

By headquartering the alliance in New Delhi, India underlines its ethos of Vasudhaiva Kutumbakam (World as One Family) where environmental causes transcend boundaries.

Budget and Timelines

As a founding contributor, India has already committed ₹150 crore funding over five years for establishing the IBCA secretariat and framing programs as part of interim projects. In the long run, the alliance envisions larger partnerships with more member countries making financial and technical contributions.

After prospective approvals, the IBCA may be formally launched at the Global Tiger Summit in September 2023 convening political leadership of tiger range countries.

The International Big Cat Alliance reinforces India’s leadership in propagating sustainability solutions with global public good. Channelizing conservation gains for securing endangered apex species beyond its borders signifies its growing pivot from climate issues to the larger environmental crisis threatening key ecosystems.


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1 Comment

  1. Suman Anand

    March 4, 2024 at 8:30 am

    A big step forward to protect our environment and animals on world base.Fantastic thought and effort to join the world as One! All the very best for this great initiative and endeavour!

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