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The Asian Elephant Conservation Act, the Asian Elephant Conservation Fund, and the conservation of the wild and the domesticated Asian elephant - Karl A. K. Stromayer


Background

With recent awareness of the increasing threat to the welfare of the Asian elephant, already an endangered species, a bill entitled the"Asian Elephant Conservation Act of 1997" was introduced into the United States House of Representatives 4 June, 1997. Passed by the House on 21 October and by the United States Senate on 8 November, it was signed into law by President Clinton on 19 November, 1997. The Act is designed to assist in the conservation of Asian elephants by supporting and providing financial resources for the conservation programmes of nations within the range of Asian elephants and projects of persons with demonstrated expertise in the conservation of Asian elephants. A grants programme, the Asian Elephant Conservation Fund (AsECF), was established for awarding proposals that fulfil the purpose described by the Act. In the first two years of operation, the AsECF has supported 26 projects in nine countries (see Annex 1). Instructions for requesting funding and a grant proposal form are supplied in Annex 2.

Purpose

The mission of the AsECF is to assist in the conservation of Asian elephants by enhancing the following: protection of at-risk elephant populations; habitat/ecosystem conservation and management; applied research on elephant populations and habitat including surveys and monitoring; conservation education; protected area/reserve management in important elephant ranges; development and execution of elephant conservation action plans; efforts to decrease elephant-human conflict and cross-border elephant issues. A specific limitation of the Act is that grants may not be used for captive breeding of Asian elephants other than for release in the wild.

The challenge: the wild and the domesticated Asian elephant

The long-term conservation of viable populations of wild Asian elephants is an enormous challenge. Historically, the capture and domestication of elephants has meant a siphoning off of the extant wild population. While the mandate of the Asian Elephant Conservation Act is to promote and assist the persistence of the Asian elephant in the wild, we believe that it is appropriate and timely to address the management of the some 16 000 domesticated Asian elephants. We are particularly interested in the possible interface between the domesticated Asian elephant and the conservation of the wild elephant and its habitat. We suggest that the domesticated Asian elephants can be used to support broad conservation objectives through use in ecotourism, sustainable forestry/green logging, crop protection/mitigation of elephant-human conflict, law enforcement, buffer zone management, and ecological monitoring. We are supportive of actions such as standardizing the registration of domesticated Asian elephants and the development of appropriate national legislation to improve the management of the domesticated elephants in the range states. Such actions will improve the management of the domesticated Asian elephant and in turn benefit the survival of the species as a whole.

Annex 1. U.S. Fish And Wildlife Service Asian Elephant Conservation Fund (Asecf) Grants, FY 1999-2000

Project title and country, recipient organization, support from ASECF and matching funds are shown.

1) School Education to Support Asian Elephant Conservation, India. Centre for Environment Education US$44 500 + US$16 250 (Applicant).

2) A Proposal to Determine the Movement Patterns of Elephants in South Sri Lanka and Provide Recommendations for Conservation Management, Sri Lanka. Biodiversity and Elephant Conservation Trust US$15 085 + US$1 028 (Applicant).

3) Conservation Assessment for Sumatran Elephants in Lampung Province, Sumatra, Indonesia. Wildlife Conservation Society US$61 750 + US$53 580 (Applicant).

4) To Trace the Mobility Patterns, Population Dynamics, and Feeding Patterns of Sri Lankan Elephants in a Select National Reserve of Sri Lanka. Mr S. Miththapala US$26 176 + US$18 110 (Applicant).

5) Identification of a Managed Elephant Range for Inclusion in Riau Province's 2000-2004 Five-Year Land-Use Plan, and Provision of Emergency Aid to Riau's Elephant Management Unit, Indonesia. World Wide Fund for Nature, Indonesia US$54 590 + US$58 531 (US$49 531 = WWF U.S.; US$9 000 = Riau Government).

6) Identification of a Suitable Managed Elephant Range, and Establishment of an Elephant Conflict Mitigation Training Program, Malaysia. World Wide Fund for Nature, Malaysia US$49 973 + US$42 434 (Sabah Wildlife Department).

7) The Old Elephant Route, Myanmar and India. The Aane Mane Foundation. $49 212 + $37 770 (Applicant = US$20 000; Governments of India and Myanmar = US $17 770).

8) Aceh Elephant Project: Elephant Conservation and Response Units, Indonesia. Fauna and Flora International US$49 550 + US$140 025 (US$105 625 = Global Environment Facility; US$34 400 = Private Donation; Additional in-kind contributions by the Aceh Province Directorate for Conservation [KSDA]).

9) Support to Prevention of and Investigation into Poaching of the Asian Elephant and Illegal Trade in Ivory, India. Wildlife Protection Society of India US$32 740 + US$30,410 (Applicant).

10) Molecular Tools for the Local Population Assessment of Asian Elephants, U.S.A. Columbia University US$35 390 + US$51 088 (US$26 392 = Applicant; US$24 696 = WWF U.S.).

11) Promotion of Elephant Conservation in Asia (Publication of GAJAH), Sri Lanka. Deputy Chair, Asian Elephant Specialists Group US$9 000 + $.

12) Elephants in Crisis, Conservation of the Asian Elephant in a Human Dominated Landscape in Vietnam. Fauna and Flora International US$56 610 + US$77 209 (US$63 359 = Dutch; US$13 850 = Applicant).

13) Support for Improved Health and Health Care Management of Captive Populations of Sumatran Asian Elephants, Indonesia. International Elephant Foundation US$50 000 + US$143 200 (Applicant).

14) Pheromones as Aids to Prevention of Crop Raiding by Asian Elephants in Range States. The Oregon Institute of Science and Technology, U.S.A. US$6 500 + $.

15) Managing Three Critical Elephant Ranges in Myanmar. Smithsonian Institution US$49 292 + $91 190 (Myanmar Ministry of Forestry).

16) Construction of Anti-Poaching Camps in Sonai Rupa Sanctuary, India. Forest Department of Assam US$35 085 + US$64 609 (Applicant).

17) Investigating the Status of Asian Elephants in the Cat Tien National Park and its Management Implications, Vietnam. WWF Indochina Program US$40 150 + US$9 350 (Applicant).

18) Elephant Conservation in Cambodia: National Capacity Building and Initial Surveys. WWF Cambodia Project and the Wildlife Conservation Society US$52 362 + US$31 500 (US$20 000 = WWF; $11 500 = WCS).

19) Assessment of the Conservation Status of the Asian Elephant in Cambodia and Capacity Building of Cambodian Conservation Authorities to Protect the Asian Elephant. Fauna and Flora International US$56 970 + US$57 080 (US$46 080 = Applicant; US$11 000 = Asian Elephant Specialist Group).

20) Resettlement of the Gujjars of the Rajaji National Park. The Friends of the Doon Society US$37 006 + US$10,500 (Applicant).

21) Resolving Elephant-Human Conflicts in Asia: Field Testing of Deterrents and Community Participation in the Mitigation of Conflicts in Southern India. Wildlife Preservation Trust International US$35 400 + US$31 080 (US$18 000 = Claiborne/Ortenberg Foundation; US$7 080 = Applicant; US$6 000 = Asian Elephant Research and Conservation Centre, Bangalore, India).

22) Equipping Protected Area Field Staff Within Project Elephant Reserves in India with Anti-poaching Kits. Wildlife Trust of India US$50,790 + US$31 276 (Applicant).

23) Asian Elephant Conservation Project in the Nanguhne Nature Reserve (national level). Yunnan Provincial Forestry Department, China US$49 540 + US$14 400 (Applicant).

24) Management of Elephant Reserves with Special Reference to Corridors by Community Participatory Programme in the Nilgiri Biosphere Reserve, Southern India, India. The Salim Ali Centre for Ornithology and Natural History, US$44 982 + US$7 020 (Applicant).

25) Developing an Elephant Conservation Strategy in Sri Lanka: Field Research, Community Based Problem Solving, and Training for Local Conservation Scientists. Wildlife Preservation Trust International, US$28 200 + US$60,636 (US$33 700 = Liz Claiborne Art Ortenberg Foundation, US$26 936 = Applicant).

26) Conservation of Asian Elephant and its Habitat in Rajaji National Park, Dehra Dun. Wild Life Preservation Organization, Forest Department, Uttar Pradesh, India, US$39 264 + US$36 934 (Applicant).

Annex 2. Asian Elephant Conservation Fund request for proposals - 2001

The United States Fish and Wildlife Service (FWS) invites submission of grant proposals for the conservation of the Asian elephant throughout its range. This programme will support projects that develop local ability to manage, conserve, research, or protect the Asian elephant through provision of funding, training and equipment.

Background

With recent awareness of the increasing threat to the welfare of the Asian elephant, already an endangered species, a bill entitled"Asian Elephant Conservation Act of 1997” was introduced into the House of Representatives 4 June, 1997. Passed by the House on 21 October and by the Senate on 8 November, it was signed into law by the President on 19 November, 1997. The Act is designed to assist in the conservation of Asian elephants by supporting and providing financial resources for the conservation programmes of nations within the range of Asian elephants and projects of persons with demonstrated expertise in the conservation of Asian elephants. A grants programme was established for awarding proposals that fulfil the purpose described by the Act.

Purpose

The purpose of the grant programme is to assist in the conservation of Asian elephants by enhancing the following:

Who may apply?

Proposals may be submitted by any Asian government agency responsible for Asian elephant conservation and protection, the CITES Secretariat, or any organization or individual with experience in Asian elephant conservation.

Requirements

Proposals must be submitted in English. An original and three copies could be accompanied by a cover letter. Documentation must demonstrate the participation and/or endorsement of the local government(s). Projects with matching funds (cash) or in-kind support (salaries, equipment, etc.) equal to or exceeding the amount requested from the FWS are preferred.

Award amount

Because of the limited funding available, preference will be given to proposals requesting US$50 000 or less; but higher amounts may be requested.

Project duration

Funding is for one year or less. Projects that require more than one year of funding will be required to compete on an annual basis through submission of additional proposals.

Reporting

Each grant recipient is required to submit regular progress and accounting reports. A final report that evaluates the success of meeting goals is required within six months of the project's completion.

Date for proposal submission

Proposals should be submitted as soon as possible but not later than 1 June, 2001. Proposals submitted after 1 June will likely be considered during the 2002 funding cycle. Proposal review and processing may require up to six months. Recipients are advised to specify a particular start date bearing in mind the necessary processing and administrative time.

How to apply

Review the attached checklist and suggestions, use the following outline to prepare your proposal.

A. COVER PAGE: Use the attached cover page format.

B. NARRATIVE: This section should contain the following:

1) Justification: A succinct statement of the need for the project. Discuss why it is important that this project be implemented.

2) Objectives: State the specific objectives to be achieved by the project. Discuss how they will lead to achievement of the goal of the conservation of the Asian Elephant and fulfil the needs stated in the Justification.

3) Methodology and work plan: Describe the methods to be used in carrying out the project. The work plan must describe in sufficient detail how the work will be implemented, including the participation of other partners.

4) Schedule of accomplishments: The proposal must provide a timetable for accomplishment of tasks.

5) Anticipated benefits and outputs: Identify the products, information or services to be provided

6) Monitoring and evaluation procedures: Discuss monitoring and evaluation procedures to be used to ensure the project goals and objectives are met.

7) Personnel and organizations involved: Provide the name of the person responsible for conducting the project and describe the organization's personnel and resources that will carry out the project. Include their experience/qualifications and capacity to meet the project objectives.

C. BUDGET:

A budget table must be presented with an itemized list of costs (i.e. salaries, travel, equipment, supplies, etc.) in United States Dollars. This table must include a column for costs requested from the FWS and columns for costs covered by matching funds (cash) or in-kind support (salaries, equipment, etc.), to be provided by the grant recipient or other partners (if applicable). Assistance to cover salaries for personnel must be well documented and generally will be given a low priority unless the entities involved make a commitment to eventually absorb these costs. However, salaries may be used as in-kind contributions to the project by the recipient. Budget line items titled miscellaneous or contingencies are not acceptable.

D. SUBMIT PROPOSALS TO:

Office of International Affairs, Asian Elephant Conservation Fund, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, 4401 North Fairfax Drive, ARLSQ 730, Arlington, VA 22203-1622 USA; (Telephone: 703-358-1754; Fax: 703-358-2849). Questions regarding the Asian Elephant Conservation Fund may be addressed to Dr Karl A. K. Stromayer at the above mailing address and fax, telephone number 703-358-1764 and/or email: Karl_Stromayer@fws.gov

ASIAN ELEPHANT CONSERVATION FUND

(Cover Page/Grant Application)

Project Title:___________________________________________________________________

_____________________________________________________________________________

Name And Title Of Project Officer:_________________________________________________

Organization: __________________________________________________________________

Street Address: ________________________________________________________________

City:_____________________State/Province_________________Country_________________

Mailing Address: _______________________________________________________________

City:_____________________State/Province____________________Country______________

Telephone: ________________Fax: _______________E-mail Address____________________

Name And Title Of Person Who Will Be The Point Of Contact:___________________________

Organization: __________________________________________________________________

Street Address: ________________________________________________________________

City:_____________________State/Province____________________Country______________

Mailing Address: _______________________________________________________________

City: _____________________State____________________Country_____________________

Telephone: ________________Fax: _______________E-mail Address____________________

Signature of Applicant

________________________________

_______________________________

(Signature)

(Title and Organization)

________________________________

_______________________________

(Printed or Typed Name)

(Date)

Partner organizations

Amount contributed

Contributing Funds to Proposals Budget

ASIAN ELEPHANT CONSERVATION FUND

Check List For Applicants

Use this checklist to ensure that your proposal is complete and appropriate for this programme.

Submit a copy of your completed checklist with your proposal.

Check one or more of the following areas of Asian elephant conservation addressed by your proposal:

___ protection of at-risk elephant populations; ___ habitat/ecosystem conservation and management; ___ applied research on elephant populations and habitats including surveys and monitoring; ___ conservation education; ___ protected area/reserve management in important elephant range; ___ development and implementation of elephant conservation action plans; ___ efforts to decrease human-elephant conflict.

Use the following checklist of items to see if they are fulfilled by your proposal.

___ The proposed work addresses a high priority of the conservation and management of the Asian Elephant and/or its habitat.

___ The project, where appropriate, involves the local wildlife agency in project planning, implementation, and follow-up.

___ Training is included, to the appropriate degree, that strengthens in-country elephant conservation efforts.

___ The goals and objectives are well defined and can be achieved by carrying out the proposed activities given the capabilities of the staff, the time available, and the proposed project funding level.

___ The methodology and work plan are well developed and lead to practical and attainable outputs (products, information or services).

___ The schedule of activities is well organized and can be accomplished within the available time and proposed project funding level.

___ The proposal includes monitoring and evaluation procedures that may be used to measure the success of the project.

___ The description of the personnel and organization undertaking the project discusses the experience of the staff and their capacity to effectively carry out the project.

___ Support for the project by the host country's government is documented in the proposal or accompanying letters.

___ The proposal explains how information developed in the project will be efficiently distributed to resource managers, researchers, and other interested parties.

___ The proposal discusses the potential for sustaining the project activities beyond the life of the project.

___ The proposal includes a budget table with an itemized list of costs in U.S. Dollars. This table must include a column for costs requested from the AsECF and columns for costs to be covered by matching funds (cash) or in-kind support (salaries, equipment, etc.) to be provided by the grant recipient or other partners.


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