The Elephant Action League (EAL) is an environmental non-governmental organization founded in 2013 in the United States by Andrea Crosta, Gilda Moratti, and Francesco Rocca.EAL is based in Los Angeles, California.
The EAL, along with other organizations including the Environmental Investigation Agency (UK), the Oxpeckers Center (South Africa), EcoJust (the Netherlands), Global Eye (Africa and Southeast Asia), 100Reporters, and others, maintain WildLeaks, an online environmental whistleblower platform.The site facilitates the collection of confidential information through a Tor-based online platform, where users can securely share anonymous tips about wildlife crime, which are then reviewed by experts.
EAL performed a 10-month undercover investigation documenting the areas where illegal ivory opportunistically enters the legal ivory market in Hong Kong and mainland China. EAL published a report of the investigation in December 2015, called China’s Old Loopholes, New Hopes.
Ivory is a hard, white material from the tusks and teeth of animals, that consists mainly of dentine, one of the physical structures of teeth and tusks. The chemical structure of the teeth and tusks of mammals is the same, regardless of the species of origin. The trade in certain teeth and tusks other than elephant is well established and widespread; therefore, "ivory" can correctly be used to describe any mammalian teeth or tusks of commercial interest which are large enough to be carved or scrimshawed.
Poaching has been defined as the illegal hunting or capturing of wild animals, usually associated with land use rights. Poaching was once performed by impoverished peasants for subsistence purposes and a supplement for meager diets. It was set against the hunting privileges of nobility and territorial rulers.
Wildlife trade refers to the commerce of products that are derived from non-domesticated animals or plants usually extracted from their natural environment or raised under controlled conditions. It can involve the trade of living or dead individuals, tissues such as skins, bones or meat, or other products. Legal wildlife trade is regulated by the United Nations' Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora (CITES), which currently has 183 member countries called Parties. Illegal wildlife trade is widespread and constitutes one of the major illegal economic activities, comparable to the traffic of drugs and weapons. Wildlife trade is a serious conservation problem, has a negative effect on the viability of many wildlife populations and is one of the major threats to the survival of vertebrate species. The illegal wildlife trade has been linked to the emergence and spread of new infectious diseases in humans, including emergent viruses. Global initiative like the United Nations Sustainable Development Goal 15 have a target to end the illegal supply of wildlife.
TRAFFIC, the Wildlife Trade Monitoring Network, is the leading non-governmental organisation working globally on the trade of wild animals and plants in the context of both biodiversity and sustainable development. It was founded in 1976 as a strategic alliance of the World Wide Fund for Nature (WWF) and the International Union for the Conservation of Nature (IUCN).
African Parks is a non-governmental organization (NGO) focused on conservation, established in 2000 and headquartered in Johannesburg, South Africa. It was founded as the African Parks Management and Finance Company, a private company, then underwent structural changes to become an NGO called African Parks Foundation, and later renamed African Parks Network. The organization manages national parks and protected areas throughout Africa, in collaboration with governments and surrounding communities. African Parks manages 18 protected areas in 11 countries as of August 2020, and employs more than 1,100 rangers. Michael Eustace, Peter Fearnhead, Paul Fentener van Vlissingen, Anthony Hall-Martin, and Mavuso Msimang are credited as co-founders; Fearnhead continues to serve as chief executive officer. Prince Harry was appointed African Parks' president in late 2017.
Wildlife smuggling or trafficking involves the illegal gathering, transportation, and distribution of animals and their derivatives. This can be done either internationally or domestically. Estimates of the money generated by wildlife smuggling vary, in part because of its illegal nature. "Wildlife smuggling is estimated at $7.8bn to $10bn a year, according to the U.S. State Department. The U.S. State Department also lists wildlife trafficking as the third most valuable illicit commerce in the world." The illegal nature of such activities makes determining the amount of money involved incredibly difficult. When considered with illegal timber and fisheries, wildlife trafficking is a major illegal trade along with narcotics, human trafficking, and counterfeit products.
Esmond Bradley Martin was an American conservationist who fought for both the preservation of elephants against the illegal ivory trade, and for the rhinoceros against the illegal trade of rhinoceros horns. A trained geographer, Martin was considered a world-renowned expert in the ivory trade and rhinoceros horn trade. He had been a special envoy of the United Nations for the conservation of rhinoceros. Militant for a reduction in the demand for ivory to dry up the market, he participated notably in the stop of rhinoceros horn trade to China in 1993 and ivory in 2017.
The ivory trade is the commercial, often illegal trade in the ivory tusks of the hippopotamus, walrus, narwhal, mammoth, and most commonly, African and Asian elephants.
Laurel Neme is an American consultant in environmental and wildlife policy and natural resource management. She is the author of the book Animal Investigators: How the World's First Wildlife Forensics Lab Is Solving Crimes and Saving Endangered Species. She has worked as a consultant for the United States Treasury Department, the World Bank, bilateral donors such as USAID, and non-governmental organizations including the Environmental Defense Fund, the Nature Conservancy, and the World Wildlife Fund.
GlobaLeaks is an open-source, free software intended to enable secure and anonymous whistleblowing initiatives. It was developed by the Hermes Center for Transparency and Digital Human Rights, an Italian-based NGO supporting freedom of speech online.
The Sheldrick Wildlife Trust operates an orphan elephant rescue and wildlife rehabilitation program in Kenya. It was founded in 1977 by Dame Daphne Sheldrick to honor her late husband, David Sheldrick. Since 2001, it has been run by their daughter, Angela Sheldrick.
Elephant hunting or elephant poaching and exploitation of the ivory trade are illegal in Chad and pose a major threat to elephant populations. The profitable ivory industry is also a threat to the lives of rangers, even in the national parks, such as Zakouma National Park, the worst-affected area.
Care for the Wild International is an animal charity, a non-governmental organization established in 1984 and based in the United Kingdom. It supports wildlife projects and it campaigns on animal rights issues in Britain and around the world.
World Elephant Day is an international annual event on August 12, dedicated to the preservation and protection of the world's elephants. Conceived in 2011 by Canadian filmmakers Patricia Sims and Michael Clark of Canazwest Pictures, and Sivaporn Dardarananda, Secretary-General of the Elephant Reintroduction Foundation in Thailand, it was officially founded, supported and launched by Patricia Sims and the Elephant Reintroduction Foundation on August 12, 2012. Since that time, Patricia Sims continues to lead, support and direct World Elephant Day, which is now recognized and celebrated by over 100 wildlife organizations and many individuals in countries across the globe.
Last Days is a 2014 animated short documentary film about the decline of African elephant populations and the illegal ivory trade. It was directed by Kathryn Bigelow, whose other films include The Hurt Locker (2009), Point Break (1991), and Zero Dark Thirty (2012). Featured in the film is footage of the 2013 Westgate shopping mall attack in Nairobi, Kenya, which has been attributed to the militant organization Al-Shabaab. The film advances the claim that terrorist networks derive much of their income from poached ivory.
John E. Scanlon is an Australian attorney who has worked with Australian and international environmental organizations.
The destruction of ivory is a technique used by governments and conservation groups to deter the poaching of elephants for their tusks and to suppress the illegal ivory trade. As of 2016, more than 263 tonnes (580,000 lb) of ivory has been destroyed, typically by burning or crushing, in these high-profile events in 21 countries around the world. Kenya held the first event in 1989, as well as the largest event in 2016, when a total of 105 tonnes (231,000 lb) of ivory were incinerated.
The Ivory Game is a 2016 American documentary film, directed by Kief Davidson and Richard Ladkani. The film examines the ivory trade, which has become a global concern, pitting governments and environmental preservationalists against poachers and Chinese ivory merchants.
Paula Kahumbu is a wildlife conservationist and Chief Executive Officer of WildlifeDirect. She is best known as a campaigner for elephants and wildlife, spearheading the Hands Off Our Elephants Campaign, which was launched in 2014 with Kenyan First Lady Margaret Kenyatta.
Steven R. Galster is an American environmental and human rights investigator and counter-trafficking program designer. Since 1987, he has planned and participated in investigations and remedial programs to stop wildlife and human trafficking and to mitigate corruption and build governance in Asia, Africa, Russia, South America and the USA.