CITES CoP17 PreInfo

tigerphoto_jv029-3

I get a notice, once a day, of all the stuff that’s going on with the Federal Register.  Today I was looking for some good news, that I don’t see posted yet, but more on that later.

Buried in pages and pages about everything you can imagine was a pretty good synopsis of what you have to do if you care about protecting endangered species.  Since only a minute number of animal advocates will ever see this, I figured I’d post part of it here, for those searching the Internet for a way to understand how CITES works and what they can do.  Warning, it isn’t easy reading, since it’s created by the government.

DEPARTMENT OF THE INTERIOR

Fish and Wildlife Service

[Docket No. FWS-HQ-IA-2014-0018; 96300-1671-0000-R4]


Conference of the Parties to the Convention on International 
Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora (CITES); 
Seventeenth Regular Meeting; Provisional Agenda; Announcement of Public 
Meeting

AGENCY: Fish and Wildlife Service, Interior.

ACTION: Notice.

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SUMMARY: The United States, as a Party to the Convention on 
International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora 
(CITES), will attend the seventeenth regular meeting of the Conference 
of the Parties to CITES

[[Page 40901]]

(CoP17) in Johannesburg, South Africa, September 24 to October 5, 2016. 
Currently, the United States is developing its negotiating positions on 
proposed resolutions, decisions, and amendments to the CITES Appendices 
(species proposals), as well as other agenda items that have been 
submitted by other Parties, the permanent CITES committees, and the 
CITES Secretariat for consideration at CoP17. With this notice we 
announce the provisional agenda for CoP17, solicit your comments on the 
items on the provisional agenda, and announce a public meeting to 
discuss the items on the provisional agenda.

DATES: 
    Public meeting: The public meeting will be held on July 19, 2016, 
at 1:00 p.m.
    Comment submission: In developing the U.S. negotiating positions on 
species proposals and proposed resolutions, decisions, and other agenda 
items submitted by other Parties, the permanent CITES committees, and 
the CITES Secretariat for consideration at CoP17, we will consider 
written information and comments you submit if we receive them by 
August 8, 2016.

ADDRESSES: 

Public Meeting

    The public meeting will be held in the South Interior Building 
Auditorium at 1951 Constitution Avenue NW., Washington, DC. Directions 
to the building can be obtained by contacting the Division of 
Management Authority (see FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT). For more 
information about the meeting, see ``Announcement of Public Meeting'' 
under SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION.

Comment Submission

    You may submit comments pertaining to items on the provisional 
agenda for discussion at CoP17 by one of the following methods:
     Federal eRulemaking Portal: http://www.regulations.gov. 
Follow the instructions for submitting comments on Docket No. FWS-HQ-
IA-2014-0018 (the docket number for this notice).
     U.S. mail or hand-delivery: Public Comments Processing, 
Attn: FWS-HQ-IA-2014-0018; Division of Policy, Performance, and 
Management Programs; U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service; 5275 Leesburg 
Pike, MS BPHC; Falls Church, VA 22041.
    We will not consider comments sent by email or fax or to an address 
not listed in ADDRESSES. If you submit a comment via http://www.regulations.gov, your entire comment, including any personal 
identifying information, will be posted on the Web site. If you submit 
a hardcopy comment that includes personal identifying information, you 
may request at the top of your document that we withhold this 
information from public review. However, we cannot guarantee that we 
will be able to do so. We will post all hardcopy comments on http://www.regulations.gov. Comments and materials we receive, as well as 
supporting documentation, will be available for public inspection on 
http://www.regulations.gov, or by appointment, between 8 a.m. and 4 
p.m., Monday through Friday, except Federal holidays, at: U.S. Fish and 
Wildlife Service Headquarters, Division of Management Authority, 5275 
Leesburg Pike, Falls Church, VA 22041-3803; telephone 703-358-2095.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: For information pertaining to 
resolutions, decisions, and other agenda items, contact: Craig Hoover, 
Chief, Division of Management Authority; telephone 703-358-2095; 
facsimile 703-358-2298. For information pertaining to species 
proposals, contact: Rosemarie Gnam, Chief, Division of Scientific 
Authority; telephone 703-358-1708; fascsimile 703-358-2276.

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: 

Background

    The Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild 
Fauna and Flora, hereinafter referred to as CITES or the Convention, is 
an international treaty designed to control and regulate international 
trade in certain animal and plant species that are now or potentially 
may become threatened with extinction. These species are listed in 
Appendices to CITES, which are available on the CITES Secretariat's Web 
site at http://www.cites.org/eng/app/index.php.
    Currently 181 countries and the European Union have ratified, 
accepted, approved, or acceded to CITES; these 182 entities are known 
as Parties. The Convention calls for regular biennial meetings of the 
Conference of the Parties, unless the Conference of the Parties decides 
otherwise. At these meetings, the Parties review the implementation of 
CITES, make provisions enabling the CITES Secretariat in Switzerland to 
carry out its functions, consider amendments to the lists of species in 
Appendices I and II, consider reports presented by the Secretariat and 
the permanent CITES committees (Standing, Animals, and Plants 
Committees), and make recommendations for the improved effectiveness of 
CITES. Any country that is a Party to CITES may propose amendments to 
Appendices I and II, resolutions, decisions, and other agenda items for 
consideration by all of the Parties at the meetings.
    This is our fifth in a series of Federal Register notices that, 
together with the announced public meeting, provide you with an 
opportunity to participate in the development of U.S. negotiating 
positions for the seventeenth regular meeting of the Conference of the 
Parties to CITES (CoP17). We published our first CoP17-related Federal 
Register notice on June 27, 2014 (79 FR 36550), in which we requested 
information and recommendations on species proposals for the United 
States to consider submitting for consideration at CoP17. In that 
notice, we also described the U.S. approach to preparations for CoP17. 
We published our second such Federal Register notice on May 11, 2015 
(80 FR 26948), in which we requested information and recommendations on 
proposed resolutions, decisions, and other agenda items for the United 
States to consider submitting for consideration at CoP17, and provided 
preliminary information on how to request approved observer status for 
non-governmental organizations that wish to attend the meeting. In our 
third CoP17-related Federal Register notice, published on August 26, 
2015 (80 FR 51830), we requested public comments and information on 
species proposals that the United States is considering submitting for 
consideration at CoP17; and in our fourth such notice, published on 
December 4, 2015 (80 FR 75873), we requested public comments and 
information on proposed resolutions, decisions, and other agenda items 
that the United States was considering submitting for consideration at 
CoP17, and provided more information on how to request approved 
observer status for non-governmental organizations that wish to attend 
the meeting. A link to the complete list of those Federal Register 
notices, along with information on U.S. preparations for CoP17, can be 
found at http://www.fws.gov/international/cites/cop17. You may obtain 
additional information on those Federal Register notices from the 
following sources: For information on proposed resolutions, decisions, 
and other agenda items, contact the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, 
Division of Management Authority, 5275 Leesburg Pike, MS-IA, Falls 
Church, VA 22041; and for information on species proposals, contact the 
Division of Scientific Authority, 5275 Leesburg Pike, MS-IA, Falls 
Church, VA 22041. Our

[[Page 40902]]

regulations governing this public process are found in 50 CFR 23.87.
    On April 26 and 27, 2016, the United States submitted to the CITES 
Secretariat, for consideration at CoP17, its species proposals, 
proposed resolutions, proposed decisions, and other agenda items. These 
documents are available on our Web site at http://www.fws.gov/international/cites/cop17.

Announcement of Provisional Agenda for CoP17

    The provisional agenda for CoP17 is currently available on the 
CITES Secretariat's Web site at http://www.cites.org/eng/cop/17/doc/index.php. The working documents associated with the items on the 
provisional agenda, including proposed resolutions, proposed decisions, 
and discussion documents, are also available on the Secretariat's Web 
site. To view the working document associated with a particular agenda 
item, access the provisional agenda at the above Web site, locate the 
particular agenda item, and click on the document link for that agenda 
item in the column entitled ``Document.'' Finally, the species 
proposals that will be considered at CoP17 are available on the 
Secretariat's Web site. Proposals for amendment of Appendices I and II 
can be accessed at the web address given above. We look forward to 
receiving your comments on the items on the provisional agenda.

Announcement of Public Meeting

    We will hold a public meeting to discuss the items on the 
provisional agenda for CoP17. The public meeting will be held on the 
date specified in the DATES section and at the address specified in the 
ADDRESSES section. You can obtain directions to the building by 
contacting the Division of Management Authority (see the FOR FURTHER 
INFORMATION CONTACT section above). Please note that the South Interior 
Building Auditorium is accessible to the handicapped and all persons 
planning to attend the meeting will be required to present photo 
identification when entering the building. Persons who plan to attend 
the meeting and who require interpretation for the hearing impaired 
must notify the Division of Management Authority by July 5, 2016. For 
those who cannot attend the public meeting but are interested in 
watching via live stream please go to our Web site http://www.fws.gov/international/cites/cop17/index.html, and look for the link to the live 
feed.

Future Actions

    Through an additional notice and Web site posting in advance of 
CoP17, we will inform you about tentative U.S. negotiating positions on 
species proposals, proposed resolutions, proposed decisions, and agenda 
items that were submitted by other Parties, the permanent CITES 
committees, and the CITES Secretariat for consideration at CoP17.

    Authority: The primary author of this notice is Clifton A. 
Horton, Division of Management Authority; under the authority of the 
U.S. Endangered Species Act of 1973, as amended (16 U.S.C. 1531 et 
seq.).

    Dated: June 9, 2016.
Stephen Guertin,
Acting Director, Fish and Wildlife Service.
[FR Doc. 2016-14870 Filed 6-22-16; 8:45 am]
 BILLING CODE 4310-55-P

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