Saving Critically Endangered Asian Elephants

04/05/2013 07:05 pm ET | Updated Jun 05, 2013

The brutal 'War Against Nature' has nearly annihilated the Sumatran and Borneo elephants. And the prime culprit causing habitat loss is the rapacious and insatiable Indonesian palm oil plantation industry.

In addition to the corruption, which is rife throughout Indonesia's protected forests - poachers have also slaughtered the elephants for their tusks feeding the burgeoning international ivory market.

Over the past year in excess of 18 Sumatran elephants have been murdered. On the island of Borneo a similar story is playing out with the critically endangered pygmy elephants. It is heartbreaking to watch a pygmy elephant calf mourn the loss of its mother in the Gunug Rara Forest Reserve.

Last month in Sydney, Australia, Leif Cocks, founder of The Orangutan Project and Project Leader Alex Mobrucker launched the International Elephant Project to help save the remaining wild Sumatran and Borneo elephants utilizing effective elephant conservation actions.

There's less than 1,600 Sumatran elephants and about 1,000 Borneo pygmy elephants left on the globe. This is an epic crisis and these awesome animals are loosing their habitat in many cases due to illegal palm oil plantations.

The goal of the International Elephant Project is for the remaining elephants to live in the wild with their herds, and coexist peacefully with the indigenous peoples.

Please support the International Elephant Project they need help - now!

Earth Dr Reese Halter is a broadcaster, biologist and author of The Insatiable Bark Beetle.