Instigator / Pro
4
1646
rating
59
debates
66.1%
won
Topic

THBT Wildlife Trade is the Most Critical Issue Primarily Involving Non-human Animals

Status
Finished

All stages have been completed. The voting points distribution and the result are presented below.

Arguments points
0
3
Sources points
2
2
Spelling and grammar points
1
1
Conduct points
1
0

With 1 vote and 2 points ahead, the winner is ...

RationalMadman
Parameters
More details
Publication date
Last update date
Category
Nature
Time for argument
Two days
Voting system
Open voting
Voting period
One month
Point system
Four points
Rating mode
Rated
Characters per argument
10,000
Contender / Con
6
1603
rating
352
debates
65.34%
won
Description
~ 649 / 5,000

Wild animal: a wild animal must have been living in the natural environment – not domesticated.

Wildlife trade is big business, with wild plants, animals, and products made from them sold around the globe, legally and illegally. It’s also a leading cause of the planet’s accelerating biodiversity crisis and resultant ecosystem collapse.

Burden of proof is shared

Con must show at least one issue concerning non-human animals that is more critical to resolve than the wildlife animal trade. Examples may include endangered animals, animal testing, animal cloning, so on and so forth.

Critical: Most important, most significant, most influential

Round 1
Pro
The problems with Wildlife Trade

Animals must not unnecessarily suffer, as it is cruel and inhumane to torture something that feels pain. Similarly, the animal cannot pose severe harm to the owner, otherwise, we encourage people to send themselves to their deaths. It is not possible to give them the necessities they have in the wild. We need a significant amount of space, natural mating, and reproduction, etc to support them. Therefore, they are suffering due to their needs not being met. Many exotic animals are also innately powerful creatures with natural hunting instincts, so they are unnecessarily dangerous to own.

I. Animal cruelty

To clarify why animal suffering matters, any living beings' unnecessary suffering is unjust. For any given suffering, Con must give a massive benefit or advantage to overcome the harm given. Even then, whatever harm can be reduced should be minimized if possible.

A dark side of owning wild animals is the animal trade world. During the capturing of wild animals, they are aggressively taken away from their natural habitat and home. Then they get prepared to be transported, where they experience cruel conditions to be hidden, a few examples are: birds having their beaks and feet taped and then stuffed into tubes, baby turtles forced to stay in their shells and then stuffed into tube socks, or baby pythons shipped in CD cases. [2] They also are exposed to and often contract deadly diseases, and the majority do not live to their final destination or for more than a year once they are in captivity. There are some laws in place that intend to protect the animal. However, transporters ignore these regulations and are not enforced or tracked. Animals' needs are severely neglected and everything about the process is cruel and unethical.

On a broader level, even the expert source Nature.com agrees that "trade in wild animals or animal parts such as skins, bones or meat is a global, multibillion-dollar business that is driving several species towards extinction" [4]. The commercialization of the animals is detrimental to the environment as a result. Another strong study highlights that "No doubt, the loss of biodiversity does not only threaten new drug discovery especially in the light of emerging and reemerging diseases, but it also threatens the ability to discover a more effective therapy for the burgeoning non-communicable diseases". [5] Finally, we relate to ourselves. The loss of biodiversity inherently negatively affects our health. Even if Con would shut down the animals' rights, we still have ourselves to worry about. With the illegalization of wild animal ownership, we will inevitably help boost our health.

Even without the animal trade, owners are incompetent and unable to treat the animals properly. (PETA [1])

"In the hands of unprepared or incompetent caretakers, many exotic animals die or are abandoned. The head of the Environmental Crime Investigation unit in Western Cape, South Africa, estimates that 90 percent of exported reptiles die within a year.

Animal control authorities confiscated a crippled cougar cub from a Buffalo, New York, basement. The animal, kept by a teenager, had been fed a diet deficient in calcium and, as a result, suffered from deformed legs. Hedgehogs, who roll themselves into tight balls, can easily become injured if children try to “uncurl” them or if cats attack them. Sugar gliders are very social animals, and if they are not given enough attention, they may self-mutilate or die from the stress of loneliness."

The result of animal cruelty is to reduce the animal to a mere means to an end. This contradicts the nature of having pets: the idea of having a companion on equal or near-equal grounds. We do not adopt dogs only to skin them alive. If Con supports ownership of wild animals, he supports the animal mistreatment clear in the animal trade world.

II. Threat to owner

 Exotic animals can pose a huge threat to the safety of the owner and the public. If the animal were to ever escape or lash out (which would be the animal’s instinct), the owner and the entire public is at risk of being severely injured or even killed. Also, the animal is at risk of being killed or severely injured by humans to protect the public -- despite the owner's choice to accept the risk. Many people are unaware of the difficult and specific care, high cost, and high maintenance that these animals require. As a result, these animals suffer greatly and are not cared for properly, and often become neglected or even sometimes released. Due to these animals being raised in captivity, they are unable to survive in the wild, therefore they must remain in captivity for their entire lives [1][6]. Animal sanctuaries are facilities that rescue exotic animals that are surrendered or released by the owner, or in abusive environments. True animal sanctuaries do not receive profit, do not allow photo ops with visitors, or are even closed to the public. [3

Indeed, even though real-life examples, my claims are easy to see in reality. The Pet Monkey has bitten its owner on many occasions, with experts worrying about a potential B-virus originating from these incidents. [7] Salmonella is also common within the shedding of animals, and the implications of this are more vast. One study finds that "In total, 43% of the reptiles were shedding Salmonella spp., with a prevalence of 62%, 67% and 3% in snakes, lizards, and chelonians, respectively." [8] Even if this can be reduced with hygiene, many do not know enough information for a fully informed decision. The threat to the owner overall is far too difficult to implement some kind of fail-safe system. Already, countless people have been infected, hurt, or even killed by their wild pets. It's time to end this once and for all. 

III. Con's burden

Should con wish to legalize wild animal trade, there lies many implementation problems that prevent him from succeeding. As yet another study realizes, "most of the value and cost studies do not relate their estimates to wildlife population size, which limits their usability for efficient policy design." [9] Even though the majority of studies take place in the US, they are still not comprehensive enough when taken together. The same expert would likely ask con to answer the same problems: "relating costs and benefits to wildlife populations; estimating values and costs of wildlife in developing countries; evaluating wildlife policies in practice; addressing implications of uncertainty in population size, costs, and benefits for policy design; and estimating transaction costs for implementation and enforcement of wildlife policies."

Hence Wildlife Trade is more critical than other issues because it is more difficult to resolve, not to mention that we still have trouble enforcing illegalization worldwide. The catch-22 offered by this situation makes the long run detriments incredibly vast. If Con chooses something like man made pollution and global warming, I can easily say we are making efforts to support green energy. We are passing environment related laws and greatly reducing the power of our carbon pollution. Already, emissions have been cut by more than 73% and the particle quality has improved 30~40%. [10] The reduction of air pollution also benefits business billions of dollars, explaining why they are resolving this problem. Wildlife trade seems doomed to continue due to corrupt and selfish upper class people. While global warming is a win win situation helping everyone worldwide, poor or rich. Even the most powerful men in the world are encouraged to resolve global warming to prove trust in the citizens and proactive measures.

I have given a great pile of sources suggesting incredible danger and cruelty currently existing. I will leave the floor to Con to answer my questions, and refute my arguments.


Con
Even though this resolution appears to leave open many angles to take it on, I see this as basically an animal trafficking vs deforestation/habitat-desctruction-and-climate-change dynamic, since I'm unaware of a third threat that one could rank above those 2.

I am going to dedicate my Round 1 to outlining the case of why deforestation is the greater threat (and just like Pro includes animal experimentation on wild animals, I will include all element of climate change that has resulted from humans manufacturing and expanding at the sake of nature). 'Deforestation' in this debate, in the context that I am using the term, doesn't solely mean cutting down trees, though that is of course a major factor. It means in any climate when humans essentially do what conquerors used to do when they'd pillage other human villages, except we do it to wild animals and their habitat.

While poaching and the wild animal trade are certainly a contender, I would say that the destruction of animal habitats and ruining of nature in general is an objectively more critical threat that even we, us humans, need to be very worried about. 

To explain the core of my case, we need to understand what 'critical' means as a term in this debate. The debate description explains:

Critical: Most important, most significant, most influential
Of course what it meant is 'most critical' not just 'critical'. This 'definition' doesn't properly explain 'in relation to what' and of course it can't, since that's not part of the term itself. What is 'most important, significant and influential' to wild animals will be relative to their overall wants, needs and perceived objectives.

==

My entire case relies on one contention alone; scale and time-pressure are the key factors in determining what is most critical.

That's what my entire case rests upon, the details of climate change are merely assisting it. Pro has a different view of what is most critical to wild animals, probably he has seen a documantary about a particularly inhumane case of animal trafficking and abuse and I am by no means here vindicating anyone of the crimes they committed against exotic and/or feral creatures. I am here saying that that overall 'threat' is second place at best, with climate change and habitate destruction being first place.

When you trade wild animals, you definitely don't always do so sustainably and I'm not here to imply that. Nevertheless, part of the 'trade' is that you want those animals to be around to keep trading as well as the fact that it aims to harm some animals, as opposed to all animals in a vicinity at once. So, a trafficked lemur, tiger, gorilla etc may be mistreated severely and indeed unforgivably so. I mean, to be frank the entire non-organic meat industry has a lot to answer for (and that isn't 'wild animal trafficking') so I am by no means suggesting there isn't validity to resenting animal abuse and neglect. The issue is the scale and how desperate all wild animals would be if they could understand the issue of climate change and habitat desctruction as well as our species does (or, at least those who don't wilfully ignore the impact).

To put this into perspective, Pro is telling you that if another species were running around ruining the planet, preying on our species in many ways (not necessarily by eating), that the greatest threat to us would be the trafficking of wild animals (which would in part include human trafficking in this scenario). In the meantime, if not us alone then many other species are on the brink of extinction in this scenario, thanks to the damage being done to the environment by that species in particular.

Two-thirds of global forest cover loss is occuring mainly in the tropics and sub-tropics, where vast clusters of deforestation hotspots are destroying the important ecosystem services forests provide. 

Over 43 million hectares, an area roughly the size of Morocco, was lost in these 'deforestation fronts' between 2004 and 2017.

Deforestation puts human health and the health of our planet at risk. From policymakers to companies to consumers, urgent action is needed to halt forest loss.

But forests around the world are under threat, jeopardizing these benefits. The threats manifest themselves in the form of deforestation and forest degradation. The main cause of deforestation is agriculture (poorly planned infrastructure is emerging as a big threat too) and the main cause of forest degradation is illegal logging. In 2019, the tropics lost close to 30 soccer fields' worth of trees every single minute.
Deforestation is a particular concern in tropical rain forests because these forests are home to much of the world’s biodiversity. For example, in the Amazon around 17% of the forest has been lost in the last 50 years, mostly due to forest conversion for cattle ranching. Deforestation in this region is particularly rampant near more populated areas, roads and rivers, but even remote areas have been encroached upon when valuable mahogany, gold, and oil are discovered.

Changes in temperature, and the other impacts of climate change, are becoming more apparent, and we’re already seeing the effects all over the world. For example:
  • Some islands no longer exist because of rising sea levels.
  • Natural disasters – like floods, hurricanes and tornadoes –are occurring more frequently.
  • More animal species are going extinct every year due to the effects of climate change on the ecosystems and habitats they live in. 
And, climate change affects animal species in some specific ways too. These are some of the impacts it has on them:
  • They have to adapt to the changing climate – which has made their habitats less comfortable, and sometimes even inhospitable.
  • They’re dealing with increases in water, air and solid waste pollution that affects the food they eat and the habitats they live in. 
  • Some animals have to alter their breeding and feeding patterns in order to survive the impacts of climate change.
If these animal species can’t migrate to areas with a more favourable climate, it makes it much more likely that they will become extinct. 

I understand I am simply quoting, I find these all to be solid explanations and outlines for my case.

The fact of the matter is that we are talking about much more than just running with a chainsaw or bulldozer slicing down trees as orangutans beg us to stop (literally trying to fight off bulldozers in heart-wrenching scenes) and that's solely done in the name of some damn palm oil so you can have your nutella or whatever. It's not just 'haha poor animals, run off an adapt', it's 'hmm, maybe your entire species will be permanently wiped out all in the name of greed'.

This isn't just a case of utter disrespect for wild animals and their wellbeing (whereas wild animal trafficking is), this is a time-sensitive threat where if they approach extinction there's no coming back (unless you think by a sheer miracle the extinct species will be remutated into from a related species, which will probably take many thousands of years at best, regardless).

I am talking about what we know as an apocalypse, except it's happening in a slower, subtler way than we may think. This isn't a meteor hitting earth and wiping out lifeforms, nor is it a zombie outbreak, this is a war of attrition (as opposed to abrasion) whereby slowly, gradually the ecosystem can and will become ruined and worsened in the name of human greed.

It's not terrible for all animal beings, necessarily. The cattle that inhabit the farms that sometimes are put where there used to be a rich Amazon rainforest ecosystem, aren't complaining about their rights as domestic creatures to reproduce and exist protected from predators (other than their own farmers). The issue is that for the wild animals this is indeed an apocalypse and if things progress how they are, there will end up being only animals that can handle very hostile conditions or alternatively animals that allowed us to tame and domesticate them. 

Climate change and habitat destruction are two of the greatest threats to global biodiversity. Lattice models have been used to investigate how hypothetical species with different characteristics respond to habitat loss. The main result shows that a sharp threshold in habitat availability exists below which a species rapidly becomes extinct. Here, a similar modelling approach is taken to establish what determines how species respond to climate change. A similar threshold exists for the rate of climate change as has been observed for habitat loss—patch occupancy remains high up to a critical rate of climate change, beyond which species extinction becomes likely. Habitat specialists, especially those of relatively poor colonizing ability are least able to keep pace with climate change. The interaction between climate change and habitat loss might be disastrous. During climate change, the habitat threshold occurs sooner. Similarly, species suffer more from climate change in a fragmented habitat.

I predict that Pro will rebuke me based on the animals being able to adapt to climate change, however, I preemptively retort that part of adapting will involve extinction of species and that it's not like you can 'replace' or 'give back' the land that's taken. This idea that you can plant seeds while cutting down trees and feel good about what you did, is prepostrous, what are the birds meant to do when they can't build nests? Literally everything in the ecosystem is affected by it, it takes years for them to grow and the other plants even may become more or less abundant based on it (which means the food-source for wild animals that eat plants may be harmed).
Round 2
Pro
My main counter-argument will be based on how climate change is improving, along with the idea that global warming may not all be negative (and hence not considered as critical of an issue).

Framework
Even though critical issues seem like they can be measured upon negative impacts, they can also be measured upon the changes they bring and actions inspired. For example, Con has basically admitted everything in my case, and hence, the only positive gain is the billion dollar industry weighted upon using animals as a means to an end. Their direct involvement and inability to resolve the problem means that in the long run wildlife trade's detriments will only pile up and up. If Global Warming will eventually be resolved, then it is not as critical as the impossible wildlife trade. In addition, the intentions also matter, as my case counters their plan to abuse animals as mere objects. While countries are clearly cutting back on fossil fuels because renewable energy is an acceptable replacement, and they are showing acceptance of better ideas that improve the world, such as environmental protection.

Deforestation

While Con seems to hype up all the damage, notice carefully how he wastes most of space proving it is a problem, rather than the extent of the problem. The true results are vague and limited to only one of his sources:

  • Natural disasters – like floods, hurricanes and tornadoes –are occurring more frequently.
  • More animal species are going extinct every year due to the effects of climate change on the ecosystems and habitats they live in. 
And, climate change affects animal species in some specific ways too. These are some of the impacts it has on them:
  • They have to adapt to the changing climate – which has made their habitats less comfortable, and sometimes even inhospitable.
  • They’re dealing with increases in water, air and solid waste pollution that affects the food they eat and the habitats they live in. 
  • Some animals have to alter their breeding and feeding patterns in order to survive the impacts of climate change.
Now here's what we don't know. We don't know *how* much more they're frequently occurring. And even with habitat harm and difficulty to live, it has been incredibly vague compared to my argument. I say that animal trafficker's abuse is far more direct, powerful, and visceral. While we are regulating stricter laws to prevent climate change, notice that con has failed to address the crux of my main argument. On the other hand, deforestation has greatly decreased over the last decade, from 12 million in 2010~2015 to 10 million in 2015~2020. [8] By this progress, we will cut it down to nearly zero within 50 years. 

Recall: the majority do not live to their final destination or for more than a year once they are in captivity.... transporters ignore these regulations and are not enforced or tracked. 

Unlike the global warming phenomenon, the international pressure is less severe and harder to enforce within the wild life animal trade. Even though global warming seems more severe on the surface, it's precisely because the world has phrased it this way that allows the damage to be reduced. Already, we have banded together major world powers in order to advance science and resolve the problem. [1] While it is essential to reduce the carbon dioxide to acceptable levels, it is not without benefits. The forced alliances concentrated on the single problem has arguably prevented major wars and worse interactions. The focus on global warming has united nations together and produced a more positive result.

Not only has global warming created important alliances to work on scientific improvements, it has also forced countries to establish renewable energy standards. From a source that talks about sustainable energy, we actually encourage developing countries to get out of their poverty. [2] Instead of relying on fossil fuels, our combat of climate change has produced a standard that allows these countries to turn around their dangerous situation. With the results of banded together countries and renewable energy helping the environment, it's very clear that climate change is predestined to being solved over the next century, producing strong economies out of developing countries. Hence, Global Warming as an issue has reduced negative effects due to our actions taken. 

Warming Benefits

As seemingly impossible as it is, global warming also has positive effects that reduce Con's case. Firstly, boosting my renewable energy case, climate change's economic benefits can be balanced across countless country. As we reduce the warming to our desired target, the harm to animals become far more negligible overall. [3] That is another point in my favor as animal trade will always severely harm the animals. It is near impossible to keep the ethics when you directly involve yourself in their harm. Not only so, warming also benefits the small within aquatic systems, showing that not all animals are ruined by our activities [4]. In addition, we still have an acceptable error range before we breach the 1.5 Celsius limit, as the current difference is only 1 Celsius [5]. In addition to this, global warming's green energy solution will create hundreds of thousands job jobs in the long run, thus proving to be a good catalyst for change. [7]

Dropped Arguments

  • Wild animals adopted by people suffer and tend to die in the wild, in a way far more certain than Con's ambiguous studies.
  • Emissions have been cut by more than 73% and the particle quality has improved 30~40%.
  • Resolving global warming benefits businesses by billions of dollars, and hence companies are encouraged to help out (in contrast to wildlife trade)
More space? Let's add more arguments

VI. Encourage Other Black Markets
       If animal trading wasn't bad enough, the activity also bears remarkable resemblance to other illegal trade and encourages other black markets to continue. There's little unique ideas separating this from the other. After all, humans versus animals, you could say both become the same when you are being traded. Truly, as a study explains in its abstract alone, it is "is commonly positioned alongside the illegal drugs, arms, and human trafficking trades in regard to the economic values involved.". [9] If this wasn't enough, it also explains that our inherent standards and expectations drive forth this illegal trade. " The market for IWT ‘goods’ is linked to cultural and social norms—such as religious practice, health benefits, or status symbols—which influence different types of offenders (e.g. trophy hunters, traditional medicine users)". As you can see, in contrast to global warming based off of lack of knowledge, the animal trade market is associated with malicious men and similarly wrong ideas. Hence, Animal Trading is still yet more critical to address, because we must reshape the basic ideology and assumptions of people. Otherwise, Con must also fight against drug trafficking, human trafficking, and other issues in similar vein.

Conclusion

Global Warming seems more like a catalyst for better change rather than a truly pressing issue. It is easily resolvable and vast steps have been made to reduce deforestation, emissions, and renewable energy sources. Not only so, it has managed to force countries to produce technology and science that meets higher standards and can be used in different ways. Both Warming and Trading cause extinction of animals, destruction of ecosystems, and victimization of animals. However, wildlife trade is far more malicious as it inherently is based upon exploitation and is not as morally ambiguous as global warming activities. Especially when you consider the solutions we are striving to achieve. As such, wildlife trade is a more critical issue to resolve. Now back to con.

Con
What 'dropped arguments' have got to do with Round 1 is beyond me. This accusation of vagueness is equally absurd, considering that I had to keep my argument within a certain quota of characters and was outlining my case.

To understand the full impact of habitat destruction and the climate change involved with our 'leeching' on nature in order to expand in the name of greed. Our species and what we do in the name of corporations and our greed, has had nearly incalculable chain reactions that either have made species extinct or at the very least they are perishing far more than before (because, as Pro likes to point out, once they are perished enough we label them as 'endangered' and at times do protect them but that tends to involve the selling of wild animals to zoos, which ironically contradicts his own case).

 An area of unspoiled land larger than North America is likely to be damaged by human activity in the next 30 years.


 The spread of human activity threatens ¼ of the world's mammals with extinction.


 Logging affects approximately 14-17% of endangered species, grazing affects 19-22%, water development affects 29-33%, recreation affects 23-26%, and mining impacts on 14-21%.


 Habitat destruction from human activity is the primary cause of risk for 83% of endangered plant species.


 For migrant bird populations, a decline of close to 40% is directly linked to habitat destruction.


 For amphibians, declining populations are linked to habitat destruction, introduction of exotic species, water pollution and ozone depletion.


 Habitat destruction was also a contributing factor in the extinction of at least 73% of freshwater fish in North America and the leading threat to fish species considered threatened, endangered or of special concern.

There, there are some statistics to put into perspective how urgent and destructive this threat is. 

1. Wild Vertebrate Populations Are Declining
Earth's population of wild vertebrates — all mammals, birds, reptiles, amphibians and fish — experienced an overall decline of 60 percent from 1970 to 2014, the most recent year with available data. (By comparison, the 2016 and 2014 editions reported a 58 percent and 52 percent decline since 1970, respectively.)

2. Many Researchers Worked on the Report
More than 50 researchers from around the world contributed to the 2018 report, analyzing a total of 16,704 animal populations from 4,005 species.

3. Habitat Loss Is the Biggest Threat to Vertebrates
The No. 1 cause of the decline is habitat loss and degradation, which accounts for nearly half of all threats within each taxonomic group, except fish (28 percent). Common threats to wildlife habitat include "unsustainable agriculture, logging, transportation, residential or commercial development, energy production and mining," the report notes, adding that "fragmentation of rivers and streams and abstraction of water" are also prevalent causes in freshwater ecosystems.

4. Ecosystems Are Being Destroyed
This phenomenon is shrinking some of Earth's most iconic ecosystems — roughly 20 percent of the Amazon rainforest has disappeared in just 50 years, for example, while about half of all shallow-water corals have been lost in the last 30 years. Yet it also threatens many other, less famous habitats such as wetlands, which have lost 87 percent of their extent in the modern era, according to the report.

5. Overexploitation Is Another Serious Threat to Vertebrates
The No. 2 overall cause is overexploitation, which refers not only to the deliberate hunting, poaching and harvesting of wildlife, but also to the unintentional killing of non-target species, commonly known as bycatch. Overexploitation is a particularly big problem for fish, accounting for 55 percent of threats facing fish populations.

6. Other Human Activities Also Pose Major Threats
Other top threats include invasive species, disease, pollution and climate change. The latter is most commonly reported as a threat for bird and fish populations, the report notes, accounting for 12 percent and 8 percent of threats, respectively.

7. Freshwater Habitats Have Been Especially Hit Hard
The fastest wildlife decline is in freshwater habitats, which lost 83 percent of their vertebrate populations between 1970 and 2014. The total number of freshwater vertebrates drops by about 4 percent each year.

8. Tropical Regions Are Also Particularly Vulnerable
The planet's tropical regions are losing vertebrate species at an especially dramatic rate, with South and Central America suffering an 89 percent decline since 1970. That's the most pronounced decline of any "biogeographic realm," according to the report, followed by the Indo-Pacific (64 percent), Afrotropical (56 percent), Palearctic (31 percent) and Nearctic (23 percent).

9. Habitat Availability for Vertebrates Is Also Declining
On top of tracking population declines, the 2018 report also looks at additional indicators related to species distribution, extinction risk and biodiversity. The Species Habitat Index (SHI), for example, offers "an aggregate measure of the extent of suitable habitat available for each species." Overall trends in the SHI for mammals fell by 22 percent since 1970, with the steepest regional decrease reported in the Caribbean at 60 percent. Other regions with declines greater than 25 percent were Central America, Northeast Asia and North Africa.

10. Biodiversity Is Declining Too
The report also provides a Biodiversity Intactness Index (BII) that ranges from 100 to 0 percent, with 100 representing "an undisturbed or pristine natural environment with little to no human footprint." The most recent global estimates suggest the BII fell from 81.6 percent in 1970 to 78.6 percent in 2014.

11. Biodiversity Is Vital to Human Civilization
Biodiversity is not merely a luxury that's "nice to have," as the report puts it, but a linchpin of human civilization that gives us vital resources. Globally, these ecosystem services are worth an estimated $125 trillion per year. As one example, the report examines how much we rely on the planet's pollinators — which are responsible for $235 billion to $577 billion in crop production per year — and how their abundance, diversity and health are affected by climate change, intensive agriculture, invasive species and emerging diseases.

Forgive me for spamming quotes but I was called out by Pro for not giving hard stats and being vague, I have no choice but to show solid stats and explanations from highly reliable scientific sources. What they say, if I put it into my own words, would be exactly the same just alternate wording for the sake of it.

I will happily expand and handle rebuttals on everything in those quotes.

Now, to address Pro's other rebuttals in Round 2.

The idea that because global warming is being fought against, it defaults to the lesser threat.

This is very clearly a logical fallacy. I admit that Pro was in a way entitled to make this logical fallacy, since I had given little statistical backing, so this Round I gave it. Nonetheless, just because the greater threat has more people concerned about it doesn't mean much in the way of which ends up the net-greater threat.

You see, biodiversity been nearly irreperably affected in many different rainforests, snowy environments, open fields etc. When I say irreperably, Pro may argue that the suffering experienced by trafficked animals is also cruel and the agony of those animals can't be taken back, to which I say sure but on what scale? When the results of our greed against nature hit habitats, almost everything in the habitat is negatively affected, sometimes they find a way to adapt and neutralise it but very, extremely rarely is anything ever positively affected. On the other hand, when certain species are traded, both others in the vicinity  may actually benefit from their absense as well as the animals aren't all tortured. Not all trafficked animals are inhumanely tortured, there are defintely zoos that treat their animals decently and just want some more creatures when purchasing them. There's also scientists who reach the later stages of their research (past the rodents) and need to test it on something close to a human that is perhaps not just physiologically but also psychologically similar. This can be cruel if done too early in the trials and with far too large a risk margin, nonetheless it can be done correctly
at the right time in the testing phase to justify it as a net-positive move that even can help vets learn things, not just benefit our species.
 In fact, it is these things that make me wonder why Pro suggests we aren't fighting against abusive wildlife trading, we definitely are (even scientists themselves are trying to minimise unnecessary suffering of complex primates etc used in experiments).

Almost 100% of the sources and URLs that Pro used regarding wildlife trade is proof of there being organised movements against it. Pick any link and ask yourself what the writer and their organisation are doing.

^ this is an organisation I used in Round 1 that is fighting against habitat destruction and climate change

As for this notion of Pro:
Resolving global warming benefits businesses by billions of dollars, and hence companies are encouraged to help out
Other than renewable energy companies or ethically-focused companies, the vast majority do not benefit from environmentally friendly policies and practices.

What is Pro basing this on?
Round 3
Pro
Though Con's case is powerful, do not be deceived. While habitat destruction is a severe problem, Con must link the vast majority of it to deforestation in order to fully flesh out his impacts, else it is all for naught. 

Indeed, Con's very first source already vastly reduces his impacts. Notice how it admits that "Logging affects approximately 14-17% of endangered species...", and thus is only part of the problem rather than being the entire problem. Indeed, as wild life trafficking alliance realizes, the poaching and objectification of the animals is more closely associated with the trafficking rather than uniquely deforestation. "one million plant and animal species are now at risk of extinction due to human activities, including poaching; and that we are altering the natural world at a rate “unprecedented in human history..." [1] The site highlights. Think about it carefully. The wildlife trade not includes alive animals but also non-alive parts of animals: bones, skins, meat, so on and so forth. Therefore, the hunting should be treated as within the same vein rather than separate. Con's own source provides a bigger number offered by this recreational killing of animals -- 23 ~26%. Thus, Con's own source outweighs his impacts. 

Even if voters don't buy this logic, recall he completely dropped my previous argument linking together animal trade with other trade.

  There's little unique ideas separating this from the other. After all, humans versus animals, you could say both become the same when you are being traded. Truly, as a study explains in its abstract alone, it is "is commonly positioned alongside the illegal drugs, arms, and human trafficking trades in regard to the economic values involved.". [9] If this wasn't enough, it also explains that our inherent standards and expectations drive forth this illegal trade.

" The market for IWT ‘goods’ is linked to cultural and social norms—such as religious practice, health benefits, or status symbols—which influence different types of offenders (e.g. trophy hunters, traditional medicine users)".

As you can see, in contrast to global warming based off of lack of knowledge, the animal trade market is associated with malicious men and similarly wrong ideas. Hence, Animal Trading is still yet more critical to address, because we must reshape the basic ideology and assumptions of people. Otherwise, Con must also fight against drug trafficking, human trafficking, and other issues in similar vein.
Due to the inherent established societal expectations, it's impossible to separate different types of trafficking. Based on the logic of trophy hunter and treating the animal as prizes, the "recreational" genre is inseparable from wildlife trafficking. This is yet another point in my favor.

Con delivers a fantastic information surge about the habitat destruction in the world, but once again fails to link it back to specifically deforestation. While it is ambiguous how much logging has caused, we can safely assume it's similar statistics to the previous source. If anything, his source only clarifies that my problem is more serious than his own problem. Only when combined with all methods of habitat destruction can logging even come close to defeating the animal trafficking or similar activities. His own source highlights:

The No. 2 overall cause is overexploitation, which refers not only to the deliberate hunting, poaching and harvesting of wildlife, but also to the unintentional killing of non-target species, commonly known as bycatch. Overexploitation is a particularly big problem for fish, accounting for 55 percent of threats facing fish populations.

The rest of the source is in how we reduce biodiversity in general and hence has very little to no relevance for the case that Con is trying to make.

Other Dropped arguments

Instead of trying to address my crucial solutions' impacts and the benefits, Con has resorted merely to copying other sources. I will repeat the beneficial steps we have taken due to our fault:

  • climate change's economic benefits can be balanced across countless country. As we reduce the warming to our desired target, the harm to animals become far more negligible overall.
  • global warming's green energy solution will create hundreds of thousands job jobs in the long run, thus proving to be a good catalyst for change
  • Instead of relying on fossil fuels, our combat of climate change has produced a standard that allows these countries to turn around their dangerous situation.
  • With the results of banded together countries and renewable energy helping the environment, it's very clear that climate change is predestined to being solved over the next century, producing strong economies out of developing countries.
  • we have banded together major world powers in order to advance science and resolve the problem. 
  • The forced alliances concentrated on the single problem has arguably prevented major wars and worse interactions. 
Recall that animal trafficking has none of these powerful uniting effects, especially with direct showing of change in clean energy use, nor in a political sense. As such, Animal Trafficking is still yet a bigger problem in the end. 

Next, Con offers a handful of sources which he claims proves that a lot of actions are being taken to reduce the animal suffering, but only tackles responsible zoos and ignores all the cruel ones. EarthWise only proves that zoos *can* be good, rather than inherently being good or generally being good. The Wiley library article only talks about improvement of research on animals, which has little impact on my case. Even though Science Direct has proposed a solution, it admits that there is generally nothing done yet: "Efforts, after pet acquisition, to educate sellers and keepers to improve animal welfare and public health issues have proven unproductive." And though the last two sources show organizations are fighting, it doesn't highlight them in the same way that the world leaders are banding together to solve the deforestation-related type issues. Therefore, animal trafficking's "ragtag team of organizations" (in comparison to who's fighting deforestation) is weaker, making the problem more difficult to resolve. 

Con claims that only energy related companies would benefit, yet every corporate is powered by energy, does Con not realize this? Switching to the greener energies would still save them in the long run. As an article realizes, 300 companies are already joining in the green energy solution to reduce Con's impacts. [2] We are moving towards a low carbon economy at a significant rate. US companies are united in setting science based targets. Thus, there is even more evidence that a vast amount of corporations are trying to resolve the problems created by deforestation, rather than continuing to contribute to it.

Conclusion:

If there's one thing to take away from this round, notice how Con didn't address my analysis of the current pattern: "On the other hand, deforestation has greatly decreased over the last decade, from 12 million in 2010~2015 to 10 million in 2015~2020. [8] By this progress, we will cut it down to nearly zero within 50 years. " As our current efforts show leap upon leap of improvements, Con's case grows weaker and weaker. Even at its worst, it's ambiguous how severe deforestation affects the warming in general. While animal trading is related closely with other recreational activities, and links to implicit acceptance of other trafficking in general. Remember that Con has not addressed that prioritizing Con's case means also ignoring human trafficking, arms trafficking, and drug trafficking.

Recall: While countries are clearly cutting back on fossil fuels because renewable energy is an acceptable replacement, and they are showing acceptance of better ideas that improve the world, such as environmental protection.

Recall: While Animal trading and deforestation have similar effects, wildlife trade is far more malicious as it inherently is based upon exploitation and is not as morally ambiguous as global warming activities. No united standards are created to battle wildlife trade. Country alliances remain at odds and uncertain about this issue.

Con
Forfeited