Illegal Trade Threatens Elephants: New Data
by Antonio Pasolini
Last week elephants were back in the news in connection with World Elephant Day (August 12), an international day dedicated to raising awareness of the plight of elephants, who are threatened by poachers to supply illegal demand in some parts of the world. Because of that, a ravaging war against those animals is currently taking place.
2013 was not a good year for elephants. 20,000 of them were killed for their tusks, whose street value can reach $15,000 in some parts of the world or even $100,000 in China, according to data from the Elephant Crisis Fund.
A new report by The Convention in International Trade and Endangered Species (CITES) indicates an increase in the number of large seizures of ivory (500kg plus) made last year, before being shipped out of Africa. Eighty percent of seizures took place in Kenya, Tanzania and Uganda and exceeded by far the seizures made in Asia. The number of animals being poached leads to a decline in their population, and in the long term could lead to their extinction, besides all the psychological trauma to calves who have their parents killed.
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Image credit: Elephant Fund CrisisResponsibility writer for Justmeans, Antonio Pasolini is a journalist based in Brazil who writes about alternative energy, green living and sustainability. He edits Energyrefuge.com, a top web destination for news and comment on renewable energy, and contributes articles on emerging technology to Gizmag. He is also a happy herbivore.
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