The best of EcoWatch, right in your inbox. Sign up for our email newsletter!
Nearly 2 Tons of Ivory Crushed Today in New York City's Central Park
Nearly two tons of ivory was destroyed by a rock crusher in New York City's Central Park on Thursday, marking the state's efforts to stop the illegal ivory trade.
The statues, trinkets and jewelry represented the tusks of at least 100 slaughtered elephants and held a reported market value of more than $8 million dollars.
"These crushes raise awareness," John Calvelli, a spokesman for the Wildlife Conservation Society (WCS), which runs the city's zoos, told New York Daily News. "Crushing the ivory shows that the ivory has no value, so people can stop killing the elephants."
The New York Daily News noted that there are only 400,000 African elephants left in the wild. If poaching continues at the same rate, experts predict that the species will be extinct by 2025.
The artifacts destroyed today was confiscated as a result of New York's 2014 ivory ban law.
According to the Natural Resources Defense Council (NRDC), which helped pass the state's ivory ban and helped organize the crush with WCS and the New York Department of Environmental Conservation, the event demonstrates a commitment to ending the global poaching crisis.
While the stockpile may be worth a lot of money, there are several important reasons to destroy these objects, as the NRDC pointed out.
"Doing so helps reduce speculation (the existence of stockpiles drives up speculation) and clearly signals to poachers and traffickers that the U.S. will not reopen its ivory market, thereby reducing their incentive to kill elephants," the group said. "It's also a security issue since stockpiles serve as targets for thieves, with a 2010 TRAFFIC report suggesting that almost one-third of stockpiles have been subject to theft."
EcoWatch Daily Newsletter
By Elizabeth Henderson
Farmworkers, farmers and their organizations around the country have been singing the same tune for years on the urgent need for immigration reform. That harmony turns to discord as soon as you get down to details on how to get it done, what to include and what compromises you are willing to make. Case in point: the Farm Workforce Modernization Act (H.R. 5038), which passed in the House of Representatives on Dec. 11, 2019, by a vote of 260-165. The Senate received the bill the next day and referred it to the Committee on the Judiciary, where it remains. Two hundred and fifty agriculture and labor groups signed on to the United Farm Workers' (UFW) call for support for H.R. 5038. UFW President Arturo Rodriguez rejoiced:
By Julia Conley
A council representing more than 800,000 doctors across the U.S. signed a letter Friday imploring President Donald Trump to reverse his call for businesses to reopen by April 12, warning that the president's flouting of the guidance of public health experts could jeopardize the health of millions of Americans and throw hospitals into even more chaos as they fight the coronavirus pandemic.
By Melissa Kravitz Hoeffner
Over six gallons of water are required to produce one gallon of wine. "Irrigation, sprays, and frost protection all [used in winemaking] require a lot of water," explained winemaker and sommelier Keith Wallace, who's also a professor and the founder of the Wine School of Philadelphia, the largest independent wine school in the U.S. And water waste is just the start of the climate-ruining inefficiencies commonplace in the wine industry. Sustainably speaking, climate change could be problematic for your favorite glass of wine.
By Jeff Turrentine
From day to day, our public health infrastructure — the people and systems we've put in place to keep populations, as opposed to individuals, healthy — largely goes unnoticed. That's because when it's working well, its success takes the form of utter normalcy.