The slaughter of African elephants is a wildlife story. But it’s also a crime story. –Terry Gross
I’ve gotten huge response to my NPR interview with Terry Gross this week. Terry got straight to the heart of the matter, bringing an important, fresh perspective to this issue.
My latest piece for National Geographic, Tracking Ivory, is the cover of the magazine’s September issue and the subject of WARLORDS OF IVORY, the premiere episode of National Geographic’s Explorer series, airing August 30, 2015 on the National Geographic Channel.
Here’s a link to the online version of the magazine story which is part of an incredible package of photographs, interactive maps, videos, and surveys about the ivory trade, terrorism, and ivory consumption.
This project is the result of work by an extraordinary team across multiple National Geographic platforms, including Photographer Brent Stirton; Filmmakers J.J. Kelley, John Heminway, Toby Strong, Pablo Durana, Jessica Harrop, Josh Thomas; Map Genius Virginia Mason, and more. Click on the links for these people and you’ll see the Mission Impossible team behind the stories.
Lot’s of people are writing me depressed about the state of affairs for wildlife in Africa, especially after CITES COP16. I don’t know about you but when I get down about widespread incompetence, lack of political will, and detective work any elementary school kid with a MacBook Pro could outperform, I sit back and relax with old organized crime stories. Here’s a classic that always makes me smile….
“Ari P.” from Canada in response to Blood Ivory: Ivory Worship has launched this online petition to Pope Benedict XVI calling upon Vatican City to sign the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species (CITES) and end the use of ivory in religious carvings.
Now would seem an opportune time for the Vatican to lead other religions on the issue of ivory trafficking and elephant poaching, and to fortify its stated commitment to the environment. Sign the petition if you agree. Or, start your own initiative.
I have no connection to this effort btw, but if you do undertake a project like this, send me an email and I’ll be happy to post something about it.