Conservation has long been a topic of concern for Cathay Pacific. For many years, we have been sponsoring habitat-protection programmes within Asia, and working with NGOs from across the region.
For instance, through the inflight Change for Conservation on Cathay Dragon flights, we have raised nearly HK$8 million for the Nature Conservancy since 2005, in order to support conservation initiatives in mainland China, including the protection of vital watershed areas, the development of sustainable fuel alternatives for local residents in Yunnan, and the monitoring of the Yunnan Golden Monkey Conservation Association. We have also worked with Friends of the Earth and the World Wide Fund (WWF), providing funding that resulted in the planting of 10,000 tree seedlings around Hong Kong and helped boost the conservation of migratory water birds, which included threatened species and the sustainable use of their wetland habitats in the East Asian–Australasian Flyway.
In recent years, through the partnership with the Kadoorie Farm and Botanical Gardens in Hong Kong, we have helped to reintroduce 609 endangered pig-nosed turtles to Indonesia by donating both cargo space and air tickets to the organisation. We delivered an endangered Sumatran rhino, Harapan, safely from the United States to his indigenous home in Indonesia. With fewer than 100 of these animals remaining in the wild, Harapan was transported back to the Sumatran Rhino Sanctuary for breeding and conservation purposes. Harapan was accompanied by a veteran animal keeper during the 16,000-kilometre journey. In preparation, the 816 kg rhino underwent medical checks and was trained to walk into, and voluntarily remain, in his crate. In addition, we assisted the Toronto Zoo by shipping boots and filtration equipment free of charge to rhino conservation rangers based in Indonesia.
Aligned with our efforts of marine conservation in the region, and supporting tourism resources at our destinations, we also support the work of Stop Fish Bombing, a non-profit organisation based in Hong Kong. The NGO incorporates a Silicon Valley-based technology company and a TV production company in Malaysia. By working with governments, local authorities, NGOs and the private sectors, Stop Fish Bombing focuses on developing underwater bomb detection technology and raising public awareness on stopping illegal activities (fish bombing), protecting reef habitats and developing sustainable aquaculture as an alternative livelihood for fishermen.
Since 2009, Cathay Pacific has engaged with shark conservation specialists and organisations in order to better understand the issue whilst exploring our role as a responsible business. We are proud to say that we are one of the first airlines in the world to raise awareness in regards to the unsustainability factors within the global shark trade. We will continue to contribute and direct our attention towards biodiversity conservation in order to give back to our community and invest in the future.