China’s Demand for Ivory Drives Illegal Elephant Slaughtering

Elephant poaching in Africa has been on the rise recently and it’s believed that it’s China’s demand for ivory which is driving the slaughter.

Jeffrey Gettleman, a New York Times reporter said on a radio show this week that there are hundreds of millions of Chinese people who now have the wealth necessary to afford various trinkets made from ivory and it’s this fact that has led to the spike in illegal elephant poaching throughout the African continent.

Ivory currently trades for approximately $1,000 a pound and Gettleman says there are armies and militias in Africa cashing in on this trade and using it to fund their civil wars. He said that it’s likely that “tens of thousands” of elephants have been killed in the past year, numbers close to the World Wildlife Fund’s data on elephant poaching in the 1980s when 100, 000 elephants were being killed annually.

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