Environmental Law Enforcement and Governance

DOI-ITAP works with other countries to help strengthen environmental law enforcement, including those related to counter wildlife trafficking (CWT), protected areas, CITES, and others. Below are selected examples of DOI-ITAP's recent programs!


Combatting Wildlife Trafficking in Cooperation with Fish & Wildlife Service (Global) 

DOI-ITAP combats global wildlife trafficking by leveraging the leadership and technical expertise of subject matter experts within DOI’s Fish and Wildlife Service – Office of Law Enforcement. 

With support from the U.S. Department of State’s Bureau of International Narcotics and Law Enforcement Affairs, DOI-ITAP provides targeted trainings on wildlife law enforcement, investigating wildlife crimes, and regulating wildlife trade to regional counterparts in Latin America and Asia.  

Participating wildlife officers not only develop new skills, but by sharing experiences with international counterparts and building lasting professional relationships, become stronger and more empowered wildlife conservation partners. 

Advancing Conservation Leadership in Central and South America (Brazil, Belize, Dominican Republic)

The Wildlife Officer/Inspector Exchange (WOE/WIE) Program facilitates job shadowing exchanges between U.S. and overseas law enforcement personnel from Brazil, Belize, and Dominican Republic. DOI-ITAP works closely with U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service Office of Law Enforcement on these exchanges, matching candidates from qualifying conservation law enforcement leadership programs. 

With support from the Department of State's Bureau of International Narcotics and Law Enforcement Affairs (INL), this project aims to strengthen enforcement, reduce demand for illegally traded wildlife, and expand international cooperation through capacity building sessions, collaboration, and by creating lasting professional relationships between international counterparts. 


Protected Area Management in the Selva Maya (Guatemala, Belize, and Mexico)

The Selva Maya, or Maya Jungle region, spans Guatemala, Belize, and Mexico, and is home to diverse wildlife and hundreds of ancient Maya cities. 

DOI-ITAP works with in-country partners and DOI specialists to strengthen protected area management, environmental governance, and local community empowerment in the region, bolstering cross-border collaboration

DOI-ITAP engages local communities in conservation efforts through initiatives such as voluntarily setting community lands aside for conservation, promoting community-based tourism, and empowering Indigenous women and youth as conservation leaders. 

With support from USAID Guatemala, DOI-ITAP and its partners have contributed to recovery of forest cover, successful prosecution of environmental crimes, wildfire prevention, protection of archaeological sites, and combating wildlife trafficking. 



Central American Wildlife Enforcement Network (CAWEN)

DOI-ITAP established and continues to strengthen CAWEN, the first operational wildlife enforcement network in Latin America. 


  • Primary Partner: State Department/Bureau of Oceans and International Environmental and Scientific Affairs (OES)
CITES Regulations in Chile

DOI-ITAP bolstered Chile’s regulations to meet minimum compliance for the Convention on the International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora (CITES). Law was signed by the Chilean president.

  • Primary Partner: State Department/Bureau of Oceans and International Environmental and Scientific Affairs
Wildlife Crime Scene Investigation in East Africa

DOI-ITAP increased capacity within law enforcement personnel in Malawi, Tanzania, and Uganda on wildlife crime scene investigations.

  • Primary Partners: USAID/Kenya and USAID/East Africa.
Counter Wildlife Trafficking (CWT) Assessments in Southeast Asia

DOI-ITAP completed country-specific CWT assessments in Thailand, Laos, Cambodia, Vietnam, Malaysia, Nepal, India, and Bangladesh to inform the USAID Country Strategic Plans.

  • Primary Partner: USAID/Regional Development Mission Asia (RDMA)
Philippines Supreme Court Adopted New Rules of Procedure for Environmental Cases

DOI-ITAP advised Supreme Court Justices in the Philippines on U.S. best practices to help draft new rules to strengthen environmental law enforcement.

  • Primary Partner: USAID/Philippines
END Act Strategy Development 

In accordance with the Eliminate, Neutralize, and Disrupt Wildlife Trafficking Act (END Act), the U.S. Embassy in Kenya developed an interagency mission strategy to combat wildlife trafficking there. In support of this effort, Two DOI technical consultants contributed to a thorough and robust strategy that will inform the future work of DOI-ITAP in Kenya as well as that of State and USAID. on the U.S. best practices to help draft these new rules to strengthen environmental law enforcement.

  • Primary Partner: USAID/Kenya
Supporting Civil Society Organizations in Kenya: 

Financial support to local organisations such as Tsavo Trust, WildlifeDirect, Conservation Alliance of Kenya, and IUCN to support their work in addressing the local drivers of poaching and human-wildlife conflict.

  • Primary Partner: USAID/Kenya
Scientific Cooperation in Kenya's Northern Rangelands: 

DOI-ITAP supported technical specialists from NPS and USGS working with counterparts in Kenya to create databases, utilize historical records, and design models to inform decision-making.

  • Primary Partner: USAID/Kenya



Doi Itap Factsheet Counter Wildlife Trafficking Worldwide Final September 2018 [pdf]

East Africa- Combating Wildlife Trafficking (CWT)

Asia & Pacific Islands

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