While the decline in the price of ivory is highly positive, we must be cautious about claiming a significant permanent reduction in demand for and consumption of ivory in China with the resulting reduction in threats to elephants.
In a major policy shift, Hong Kong--the world's largest retail market for elephant ivory--says it may now consider banning its ivory trade. A decision by Hong Kong to shut down its domestic trade would be significant.
Taking selfies, quack medical cures and collecting ornaments are all more important than protecting animals. A mounted head or showing off your wealth is apparently more valuable than a species threatened with extinction.
This ivory is used to make piano keys, chopsticks, and all manner of other trinkets. The message of the event was clear: ivory, its sale, and the market for it must be crushed, beginning with this most literal of steps.
For a brief moment yesterday, Times Square stood still. Even the world's most famous cluster of dazzling super signs, towering over Broadway, could not compete with the simple message that on this day, we all stand for elephants.
It's an upsetting film. The good news? There is a groundswell of effort that is beginning to work to slow the ivory trade. It can be done; we can save the elephants. The more we understand, the faster each of us can help it happen.
Its potential impact of this announcement could be critical to the fate of Africa's declining elephant populations, which have been targeted by ruthless criminal syndicates across sub-Saharan Africa to supply the international demand for ivory.
To pursue legislative action to restrict ivory sales in the United States, the 96 Elephants campaign has followed Hornaday's tested movement strategy: building coalitions with public and private partners, raising public awareness, and working with government leaders.