Each year, the U.S. Congressional International Conservation Gala offers an opportunity to recognize the outstanding work being done by government, non-governmental, and business leaders in furtherance of good conservation. This year’s International Conservation Caucus Foundation (ICCF) Gala included the President of Botswana, who delivered the keynote address, members of the United States Congress, international policymakers from Botswana, Colombia, Gabon, Kenya, Malawi, Mexico, Mozambique, Namibia, Peru, and Zambia, diplomats, global business leaders, and leaders from the international NGO community.
The Global Environment Facility CEO, Naoko Ishii, was one of the main speakers at the gala. “What unites us here is our conviction that protecting nature is a good investment,” said Ishii. In further remarks at the event, she stated, “It is one of the most cost-effective investments we can make to fight poverty in the developing world. Protecting nature also ensures that we have a healthy planet for our societies to thrive, for generations to come.” Ishii continued, “We have partnered with ICCF to build conservation caucuses in parliaments across Africa and Latin America, which was built on the remarkable experience of the U.S. Congress. The result of this work is stronger anti-poaching laws that protect park rangers who risk their lives on the front lines fighting against poaching day after day.”