A New Guide Helps Law Enforcement Identify Ivory in the Digital Age

A New Guide Helps Law Enforcement Identify Ivory in the Digital Age

According to the World Wildlife Fund, behind every piece of ivory—whether it be a full tusk or carved trinket—is a dead elephant. Poachers kill about 20,000 elephants every single year for their tusks, which are then traded illegally in the international market to eventually end up as ivory trinkets. This trade is mostly driven by […]

Continue Reading 689 words
Iceland Whalers Announce They Won’t Hunt Again This Year

Iceland Whalers Announce They Won’t Hunt Again This Year

For the second year running, Iceland’s notorious whaling industry will opt-out, this year blaming coronavirus social distancing restrictions that would make processing the meat impossible, as well as reduced demand for whale meat in Japan. 

Why This Matters:  Given that this is the second year of the cessation of whaling, it might just be doomed.  Whale watching is much more popular and economically important to Iceland than hunting, and the two activities are fundamentally inconsistent.

Continue Reading 447 words
$1M In Illegal Shark Fins Seized in Miami

$1M In Illegal Shark Fins Seized in Miami

The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service in January seized 1,400 pounds of shark fins worth nearly $1M that were hidden in 18 boxes in Miami Airport.  Federal officials believe the shipment originated in South America and was likely headed to Asia, where shark fins are in great demand for use in soup and traditional medicine, but they are still investigating.

Why This Matters:  Shark finning is banned in the U.S., but it is not illegal to buy and sell their fins here or even to sell the soup in restaurants in some states (it is banned in others).

Continue Reading 418 words
WWF Finds 62% of Wood Products Are Mislabeled

WWF Finds 62% of Wood Products Are Mislabeled

A new study from the World Wildlife Fund looked at 73 consumer wood products from major US retailers – everything from hairbrushes to furniture to cheese plates – and found that 45, or 62% were mislabeled.

Meaning a product is advertised as one kind of wood, but is actually a completely different species.

Continue Reading 546 words
Major Shark Conservation Victory Celebrated With Remarkable Photos

Major Shark Conservation Victory Celebrated With Remarkable Photos

This week, the nations of the world gathered at the Conference of the Parties of the U.N. Convention on Trade in Endangered Species and took a major step forward in protecting 18 species of sharks and rays, including mako sharks, wedgefishes, and guitarfishes. 

Continue Reading 557 words
Breakthroughs in Global Protection From Trade for Mako Sharks and Giraffes

Breakthroughs in Global Protection From Trade for Mako Sharks and Giraffes

Delegates from around the world came to the defense of one of the most critically endangered marine species — the mako shark (often targeted for shark fin soup) — moving ahead a global trade ban for final consideration by the U.N. body that deals with trade in endangered species despite opposition to the ban by Japan, Canada, and the United States.  Final approval of the ban is expected later this week.

Continue Reading 558 words

Want the planet in your inbox?

Subscribe to the email that top lawmakers, renowned scientists, and thousands of concerned citizens turn to each morning for the latest environmental news and analysis.