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A new study on the socio-economics of hunting is underway and seeks to report the far-reaching contributions of consumptive tourism in Africa. Specialized in natural resource and environmental economics, Southwick Associates will lead the data collection and reporting of the study. Participants of African Wildlife Consultative Forum (AWCF), including representatives of government and the professional hunting industry, are helping compile information.
Many reports of this manner have attempted to quantify the socio-economic impacts of hunting at various scales; however, few have entered the peer-review process. The Southwick Associates study will be submitted for peer review to ensure it meets the highest standard of professionalism. Such a report will provide numerical evidence of the benefits that sustainable hunting provides.
Direct hunting revenue is generally applied to wildlife conservation, and in some countries, to the communities of people that initiate wildlife conservation. In the United States, hunters spend 30 to 40 billion dollars every year, and approximately 3 billion dollars is applied to wildlife conservation. When looking at the bigger picture, the hunting industry reaches farther then just funding wildlife management; it stimulates tourism, provides job opportunities, and works vigorously to stop poachers. The people and environments who benefit from hunting appreciate the value of these contributions.
Some organizations question the impact and importance of hunting to conservation and local communities. They often promote other non-consumptive options as a better alternative and make improper comparisons to hunting economics. SCI Foundation is looking forward to the completion of the Southwick Associations study and how it is used to promote the positive role of hunting in wildlife conservation.
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