10,000 Elephants : Poaching Crisis Out Of Control
10,000 elephants…that’s how many elephants have been slaughtered in just one African nation in 2013 to feed China’s greed and ivory lust. That’s nearly 30 elephants killed each day. According to the EIA (Environmental Investigation Agency), Tanzania is the largest source of poached ivory in the world and China is its largest importer. Tanzania is home to the Selous reserve, where just 5 years ago more than 50,000 elephants roamed freely. Today, there are just 13,000. Between 2009 and 2013, the reserve lost 67% of the elephant population, with more elephants poached in this four-year period than any other country in Africa.
The poaching crisis is now being acclaimed as “out of control” as reports have come in this past August that more African elephants are being killed each year than are being born…with some populations perilously close to extinction. In fact between 2010 and 2012, over 100,000 African elephants were killed for their tusks.
What’s even more outraging is the factories, yes factories, that are legal in China for carving. A decade ago, there were 9 factories and 31 authorized ivory retail outlets in China. By 2013, the researchers found, there were 37 factories and 145 retail outlets! And even with this “legal” marketplace for ivory, at least a quarter of the ivory sold in Beijing and Shanghai is illegal.
The only way forward is a complete ivory ban.
To save the elephants, we need to stop the killing and stop the carving.
Here’s a few ways to get involved:
- Tell the World: people can’t change what they don’t know. It’s time to get the ivory trade topic trending on social media & news. And that begins with YOU. Send an opinion letter in to your local newspaper. Post information on your Facebook, Twitter and other social media accounts. Host a movie night with friends or at a local venue and watch The Last Days of Ivory, a short film about the ivory trade made by Kathryn Bigelow (watch the video at the end of this post)
- Fund the Fight: join Elephantopia as we work to save elephants and build community - as a fully volunteer led organization, your donations help us to care for Kavalamanja (an orphaned elephant victim of the ivory trade in Zambia) and put on special awareness events like the Global March for Elephant
- Write a Letter: if you see ivory in a local shop, use this template and send it to the owners. Or contact your local government representatives with this template calling for a worldwide ban on ivory, beginning with your country.