Quantcast

New York to Hold Hearing on Ivory Trade Laws and Elephant Poaching

The New York State Assembly Standing Committee on Environmental Conservation announced a public hearing on ways to improve the effectiveness of the state’s laws and regulations protecting endangered species and restricting the sales of ivory.

The hearing will take place tomorrow, Thursday, Jan. 16 at 11 a.m. at the Assembly Hearing Room, 250 Broadway, Room 1923, 19th Floor, in Manhattan. 

Despite the existing legal protections, New York has become one of the leading destinations in the U.S. for illegal ivory. In 2012, the New York State Department of Environmental Conservation, in conjunction with the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, seized more than $2 million worth of elephant ivory in New York City.

The Wildlife Conservation Society (WCS) estimates that 96 elephants are killed each day in Africa, translating into one elephant death every fifteen minutes and a 76 percent population decline since 2002.

Assemblyman Robert K. Sweeney, Chair of the New York State Assembly Standing Committee on Environmental Conservation said:

Elephants are a social, smart and peaceful animal whose existence has special protections under the law. Poachers have been illegally killing African elephants for years, bringing them to the brink of extinction. It's disturbing that New York has become one of the main points of entry for the illegal ivory trade. Not only does this illegal market cause further destruction to an endangered species, but some of the proceeds of the trade go to fund terrorism. I have called this hearing to learn how New York State can help put a stop to these reprehensible actions.

“The New York seizure is evidence of a disturbing fact: there is a direct link between the illegal ivory trade in New York State and the slaughter of elephants in Africa," said John Calvelli, WCS executive vice president for public affairs. “We are extremely grateful that the New York State Assembly Standing Committee on Environmental Conservation, under the leadership of Chairman Sweeney, is taking the illegal ivory trade in New York so seriously.”

Elephants are killed primarily for their ivory tusks which are used predominantly in carved art and jewelry. Ivory sales are regulated by a complex web of international, federal and state laws and treaties. In New York, ivory sales are regulated pursuant to Environmental Conservation Law §11-0535 which is based in part on the inclusion of elephants on the federal endangered species list in the 1970’s.

In September, WCS launched its 96 Elephants campaign to amplify and support the Clinton Global Initiative commitment to save Africa’s elephants by stopping the killing, stopping the trafficking and stopping the demand. The WCS campaign focuses on: securing effective U.S. moratorium laws, bolstering elephant protection with additional funding, and educating the public about the link between ivory consumption and the elephant poaching crisis.

Below, a short WCS video about the May 2013 elephant massacre that prompted the 96 Elephants campaign:

Visit EcoWatch’s BIODIVERSITY page for more related news on this topic.

EcoWatch Daily Newsletter

"Globally, we're starting to see examples of retailers moving away from plastics and throwaway packaging, but not at the urgency and scale needed to address this crisis." Greenpeace

By Jake Johnson

A Greenpeace report released Tuesday uses a hypothetical "Smart Supermarket" that has done away with environmentally damaging single-use plastics to outline a possible future in which the world's oceans and communities are free of bags, bottles, packaging and other harmful plastic pollutants.

Read More Show Less
Children are forced to wear masks due to the toxic smoke from peat land fires in Indonesia. Aulia Erlangga / CIFOR

By Irene Banos Ruiz

Pediatricians in New Delhi, India, say children's lungs are no longer pink, but black.

Our warming planet is already impacting the health of the world's children and will shape the future of an entire generation if we fail to limit global warming to well below 2 degrees Celsius (35.6°F), the 2019 Lancet Countdown Report on health and climate change shows.

Read More Show Less
Sponsored
Private homes surround a 20 inch gas liquids pipeline which is part of the Mariner East II project on Oct. 5, 2017 in Marchwood, Penn. Robert Nickelsberg / Getty Images

The FBI is looking into how the state of Pennsylvania granted permits for a controversial natural gas pipeline as part of a corruption investigation, the AP reports.

Read More Show Less
Three cows who were washed off their North Carolina island by Hurricane Dorian have been found alive after swimming at least two miles. Carolina Wild Ones / Facebook

Three cows who were washed off their North Carolina island by Hurricane Dorian have been found alive after swimming at least two miles, The New York Times reported Wednesday.

Read More Show Less
The Dakota Access pipeline being built in Iowa. Carl Wycoff / CC BY 2.0

The fight between the Standing Rock Sioux and the owners of the Dakota Access Pipeline is back on, as the tribe opposes a pipeline expansion that it argues would increase the risk of an oil spill.

Read More Show Less
Sponsored
Scanning electron micrograph of Yersinia pestis, which causes bubonic plague, on proventricular spines of a Xenopsylla cheopis flea. NIAID / Flickr / CC BY 2.0

A middle-aged married couple in China was diagnosed with pneumonic plague, a highly infectious disease similar to bubonic plague, which ravaged Europe in the middle ages, as CNN reported.

Read More Show Less
Milk made from almonds, oats and coconut are among the healthiest alternatives to cow's milk. triocean / iStock / Getty Images Plus

Dairy aisles have exploded with milk and milk alternative options over the past few years, and choosing the healthiest milk isn't just about the fat content.

Whether you're looking beyond cow's milk for health reasons or dietary preferences or simply want to experiment with different options, you may wonder which type of milk is healthiest for you.

Read More Show Less
Greta Thunberg stands aboard the catamaran La Vagabonde as she sets sail to Europe in Hampton, Virginia, on Nov. 13. NICHOLAS KAMM / AFP via Getty Images

Greta Thunberg, the teenage climate activist whose weekly school strikes have spurred global demonstrations, has cut short her tour of the Americas and set sail for Europe to attend COP25 in Madrid next month, as The New York Times reported.

Read More Show Less