Australia is on the cusp of finally closing an elephant-sized loophole that has allowed the ivory and rhino horn trade to thrive. After overwhelming support from the public and a bipartisan Senate inquiry, the Australian Senate has recommended banning its domestic ivory trade.
Currently, products produced before 1975 can be bought and sold legally without any stipulations. The lack of strict anti-ivory laws has created an internal market that contributes to the global poaching crisis.
What's more, the country serves as a transit route to Asia, often the final destination for rhino horns and elephant ivory.
Surprisingly, when it comes to national ivory bans, Australia falls behind the United States, UK, and even China, which is the world's largest market for poached ivory. With virtually all rhino species close to disappearing and experts warning that African elephants could go extinct by 2025, there is no better time for governments to take action.
Australia should follow their bipartisan Senate recommendation and implement a domestic ivory trade ban immediately. Please sign the petition and ask Australia's environment minister to close the loophole now.
Photo credit: U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service Headquarters Follow