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Government announces plans to ban ivory sales
The government is planning exemptions for items which do not contribute to the poaching of elephants.
Plans will cover ivory of all ages
 
The government has set out plans to implement a ban on ivory sales to help bring an end to elephant poaching.

The proposals aim to protect elephants and help combat poaching by removing criminals to trade illegally-poached ivory. The plans will be subject to a 12-week consultation and cover items of all ages, not just those created after a set date.

“The decline in the elephant population fuelled by poaching for ivory shames our generation. The need for radical and robust action to protect one of the world’s most iconic and treasured species is beyond dispute,” said environment secretary Michael Gove.

“Ivory should never be seen as a commodity for financial gain or a status symbol – so we want to ban its sale. These plans will put the UK front and centre of global efforts to end the insidious trade in ivory.”

Stop Ivory’s chief executive John Stephenson welcomed the plans, adding that the crisis will only end when people stop buying ivory.

“Along with our partners, we congratulate the government on this important step and look forward to working with it and our colleagues to ensure the ban is implemented robustly and without delay,” he said.

Similar to the approach taken by other countries, the government states that it is planning exemptions 'for items which do not contribute to the poaching of elephants and where a ban could be unwarranted'. These include musical instruments, items containing only a small proportion of ivory, items of historic interest and sales to and between museums.

During the consultation period, the government will work with conservationists, art experts and antique dealers on exactly how these exemptions can be defined, implemented and enforced.

At present, ivory produced after 3 March 1947 can be sold with a certificate, with no restrictions at all on ivory produced before that date. The trade of raw ivory at any stage is already prohibited. 

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Giraffe Conservation Foundation named BVNA’s charity of the year

News Story 1
 BVNA president Wendy Nevins has named The Giraffe Conservation Foundation as the association’s charity of the year for 2017/2018.

The Giraffe Conservation Foundation dedicates its work to a sustainable future for wild giraffe populations. Wendy Nevins said: ‘I have chosen the Giraffe Conservation Foundation for the BVNA Charity of the Year because I have always thought Giraffes were magnificent animals.

‘I also think it is important that we look at the wider issue of conservation and education across all species.’  

News Shorts
Scientists win award for openness in animal research

UK scientists have won an award for the 360ş Laboratory Animal Tours project, which offered the public an online, interactive tour of four research facilities that are usually restricted access.

The project won a public engagement award at the Understanding Animal Research (UAR) Openness Awards, which recognise UK research facilities for transparency on their use of animals in research, as well as innovation in communicating with the public.

The tour was created by the Pirbright Institute, the University of Oxford, the University of Bristol and MRC Harwell Institute.