Laurel Neme

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National Geographic

National Geographic: Elephants Win as Hong Kong’s Leader Says It Will Ban Ivory Trade

Shutting down the world’s largest legal ivory market would be a conservation milestone. By Laurel Neme PUBLISHED January 14, 2016 Hong Kong’s Chief Executive, Leung Chun-ying, announced plans to ban the domestic ivory trade during his 2016 Policy Address. The annual speech lays out the year’s policy agenda. In the middle of the two-hour monologue, between statements on…

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National Geographic: Why Shutting Down China’s Ivory Trade Won’t Be Easy

 An undercover investigation shows how Chinese businesses launder illegal ivory into the legal market and also trade in illegal rhino horn.   By Laurel Neme PUBLISHED Fri Jan 08, 2016     China is the world’s largest ivory consumer, with its legal market often providing cover for illegal ivory. The intertwining of these two markets—legal and illegal—is…

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National Geographic: How the International Trade in Geckos Is a Scam

The coauthor of a new report says low-profile species are often hit hardest by illegal and unsustainable trade. By Laurel Neme PUBLISHED Wed Jan 06, 2016 For many species threatened by the illegal wildlife trafficking, such as rhinos, elephants, tigers, and bears, debates persist as to whether a legal trade in their parts and products can reduce…

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National Geographic: Chinese Researchers Explore How to Implement Ivory Ban

China has a 3,000-year tradition of carving ivory. Shutting down its thriving ivory market won’t be easy. By Laurel Neme, National Geographic PUBLISHED Tue Dec 15, 2015   When Chinese President Xi Jinping announced in September 2015 that China would, together with the United States, work toward a complete domestic ban on ivory, it was a welcome…

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National Geographic: Take it to the People: Model for an Ivory Sales Ban

Posted: 11/24/2015        Elephant ivory seized by officials in Hong Kong. Photo courtesy of Alex Hofford.   Voters in Washington state sent a strong message to the world on November 3 when they passed the country’s first-ever comprehensive state ban on commerce in endangered animal species. The Washington Animal Trafficking Initiative 1401 (I-1401) prohibits…

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National Geographic: Hong Kong ‘Open-Minded’ to Banning its Ivory Trade

In a major policy shift, the world’s largest legal ivory market pledges new efforts to combat wildlife trafficking and may end ivory sales. By Laurel Neme, for National Geographic PUBLISHED October 28, 2015 Hong Kong—the world’s largest retail market for elephant ivory—says it may now consider banning its ivory trade. Hong Kong is also a major transit hub for…

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National Geographic: How World’s Largest Legal Ivory Market Fuels Demand for Illegal Ivory

New report shows that limited oversight of Hong Kong’s ivory traders allows laundering of illegal ivory through legal markets.   By Laurel Neme, for National Geographic PUBLISHED October 22, 2015   A new report by WildAid, an international nongovernmental organization that aims to eliminate illegal wildlife trade, together with undercover video by independent investigators provided to WildAid and WWF-Hong Kong,…

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National Geographic: Ripple Effect: Saving Elephants One Kid at a Time

      Children’s voices can be extremely powerful—a fact readily apparent on a recent Sunday when more than 325 people—most of them children—participated in Vermont’s first kid-driven Global March for Elephants and Rhinos. The event was initiated by 12-year-old Taegen Yardley, who organized a network of youngsters from across the state. Student “champions” at more than…

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