Environmental Whistleblowers

The Hindustan Times has recently published a story on a 60-ton illegal timber seizure in Maharashtra, India that was initiated by a whistleblower. Since May 2017, over 500 tons of illegally-cut timber have been seized by authorities in the west-central Indian state. The value of the timber seized over the past 11 months is an estimated 20 million Indian rupees, or approximately $308,000 USD.

The tip-off led to not only the seizure of 30 tons each of teak and khair wood, but also the closure of an illegal saw mill that was functioning as a timber depot. The seizure demonstrates the powerful role whistleblowers play in combatting the illicit timber trade.

Continue Reading Whistleblower Tip Leads To 60-Ton Illegal Timber Seizure Outside Mumbai

Today the National Whistleblower Center is excited to celebrate World Wildlife Day, a day that commemorates the signing of the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora (CITES) 45 years ago in Washington, D.C. CITES was an important step forward in promoting the protection of wildlife and biodiversity around the world. While this is a day to celebrate, we should also remember that wildlife is currently under threat like never before. We are currently in the midst of a global extinction crisis.

Continue Reading National Whistleblower Center Celebrates World Wildlife Day

The National Whistleblower Center (NWC) is proud to announce that Scott Hajost has been named the new managing director of the NWC’s Global Wildlife Whistleblower Program. Mr. Hajost will work to forge new partnerships, both in the U.S. and globally, to refer and protect whistleblowers in the areas of wildlife crime, including illegal logging and fishing.

Continue Reading National Whistleblower Center Names Scott Hajost Managing Director of Global Wildlife Whistleblower Program

Esmond Martin, after decades of working undercover investigating the illegal wildlife trade, was found stabbed to death in his Nairobi home earlier this week.

Martin was an extraordinarily intelligent man. An American geographer from New York, Martin published books and extensive reports on Kenya, Tanzania, Vietnam, and Laos. But it may have been Martin’s bravery that got him killed.

Continue Reading To Honor Esmond Martin, U.S. Agencies Must Implement Wildlife Whistleblower Programs

Picture this: while at work you become aware of conduct that you believe is unethical, illegal, or qualifies as government waste, fraud, or abuse. You decide you want to blow the whistle. But before you act, be careful! Most corporate and government networks log traffic. Your work computer and phone are not private. When you use a company or department computer, assume everything you do is monitored. These computers are an easy way for your employer to determine you are the whistleblower.

Continue Reading Whistleblowers Beware: Your Work Computer Is Probably Monitored

At a meeting last week, the Chemical Safety Board (CSB) announced that it would reverse its recommendation to institute whistleblower protections to workers on offshore oil rigs. This unfortunate turn will be bad for workers, destructive to the environment, and quite possibly even harmful to the energy industry. Continue Reading Chemical Safety Board Reneges on Recommended Whistleblower Protections

Part of the “Quick Peek” Series, exploring the NEW edition of Stephen Kohn‘s Whistleblower’s Handbook.

Whistleblowers are the key to ending wildlife trafficking and Stephen Kohn, the executive director of the National Whistleblower Center, knows it. There are over forty U.S. wildlife protection laws with Whistleblower rewards built into them. Unfortunately, for over 30 years no one has used reward provisions to activate whistleblowers to report wildlife crime (the first such provision was added the Lacey Act in 1981). Continue Reading Rule 12: Get a Reward! End Wildlife Trafficking.

The illegal wildlife trade is wiping entire species from our planet, and causing irreparable damage to our biological ecosystems. Despite all of the national and international government regulations and anti-poaching measures by nonprofit groups and other organizations, wildlife trafficking is an incredibly lucrative trade that continues to thrive, valued at $7 – 23 billion per year.

If there is any hope of tackling the global wildlife trafficking epidemic, we must turn to practical, proven methods to find a sustainable solution. Harnessing the power of whistleblowers to combat wildlife crime would be an absolute game-changer (Stephen Kohn, Monetary Rewards for Wildlife Whistleblowers).

Continue Reading Whistleblowers: Our Secret Weapon in the Fight Against Wildlife Trafficking

World Ocean Day (June 8th), is a global celebration of the vast, and largely unexplored, underwater world that makes up the majority of our planet. It’s also an annual opportunity to highlight the action needed to preserve the ocean’s extraordinary ecosystems, of which we still haven’t even scratched the surface of understanding.

In the spirit of World Oceans Day, the National Whistleblower Center’s (NWC) executive director, Stephen M. Kohn  presented a webinar, “Using U.S. Whistleblower Laws to Fight Illegal Fishing and Marine Pollution and Fund MPAs” on June 6, to discuss the impact whistleblowers have in protecting our oceans from oil pollution, and how whistleblower reward laws can be successfully applied to illegal, unreported, and unregulated fishing (IUUF). Continue Reading Against the Tide: Whistleblowers and Illegal Fishing