A Catholic animal welfare group has welcomed the launch of a consultation concerning the UK’s proposed ban on importing, exporting and dealing in items containing elephant ivory.
The Government has launched the eight-week consultation on the implementation of the Ivory Act.
Once implemented, the Ivory Act will introduce a near total ban on the import, export and dealing of items containing elephant ivory in the UK, regardless of age, allowing only for a narrowly defined set of exemptions.
Catholic Concern for Animals (CCA) said implementing the Ivory Act must be prioritised as it cited the “inordinate amount of time” it has taken to get to this point.
“Catholic Concern for Animals are pleased that the UK Government seem to be in the last stages of implementing a ban on commercial dealing on elephant ivory,” Chris Fegan, CCA chief executive, told The Catholic Universe.
“This ban is much needed but needs to be finalised once and for all. The relevant primary legislation was passed over two years ago and we are still waiting for implementation. This seems an inordinate amount of time to get this much needed ban in place.”
Elephants have been ruthlessly targeted for their tusks in recent years, causing numbers in the wild to decline sharply. Savanna elephant numbers fell by 30 per cent between 2007 and 2014. The UK’s landmark Ivory Act will help protect the world’s elephants by banning sales of ivory that may contribute to poaching.
The eight-week consultation seeks views on exempted items. People will only need to register and certify items for the purposes of dealing in items containing ivory. Those who own but are not planning to sell ivory items do not need to register.
The consultation is at: https://consult.defra.gov.uk/communications/implementing-the-ivory-act/
Picture: An elephant in the Serengeti National Park walking in front of a storm to a watering hole. (Cass Settlemyre).