In response to the alarming decline in global biodiversity, the Canadian government has announced groundbreaking measures to address the crisis facing African elephants and rhinos.
Steven Guilbeault, Minister of Environment and Climate change, recently unveiled stricter regulations aimed at curbing the trade of elephant ivory and rhinoceros horn across Canadian borders.
This historic decision reflects Canada’s commitment to international Conservation efforts and sends a powerful message against the illegal wildlife trade.
The new regulations impose a comprehensive ban on the import and export of raw elephant ivory and raw rhinoceros horn, with only a few exceptions such as items destined for museums, zoos, scientific research, or law enforcement Support.
Additionally, the import of hunting trophies made from elephant ivory and rhinoceros horn will be prohibited. Permits will now be required for household items and personal effects made from worked elephant ivory and worked rhinoceros horn.
These measures align with Canada’s obligations under the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora (CITES) and showcase the country’s dedication to protecting and enhancing global biodiversity.
Minister Guilbeault emphasized Canada’s strong opposition to the illegal wildlife trade and the urgent need to address the decline of African elephant populations and the threats faced by rhinoceros populations due to poaching.
The announcement has garnered Support from various quarters, including wildlife conservation organizations, international figures, and government officials from other countries. Kelly Butler, Wildlife Campaign Manager for Humane Society International/Canada, commended Canada’s leadership, stating that the ban reflects the will of Canadians and aligns with the majority of African nations working to protect these majestic animals.
Dr. Winnie Kiiru, a Kenyan biologist and leading elephant conservationist, expressed gratitude for Canada’s actions, highlighting the devastating effects of poaching and trophy hunting on African elephant and rhino populations. The Director of Wildlife and Game Resources of Burkina Faso, Dieudonné Yameogo, congratulated Canada on its historic decision, emphasizing that the global stance against the ivory trade could significantly reduce illegal elephant killings in African range states.
The Canadian public played a crucial role in influencing this historic decision. The Ivory-Free Canada Coalition’s petition, which gathered over 700,000 signatures, demonstrated overwhelming Support to end the ivory and rhino horn trade. Fran Duthie, President of Elephanatics, expressed gratitude to scientists, NGOs, politicians, and advocates for their tireless efforts in achieving this milestone.
Sign this petition to end the illegal ivory trade in the US!
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This article by Trinity Sparke was first published by One Green Planet on 22 November 2023. Image Credit :Etienne Outram/Shutterstock.