Business as usual until further notice but it looks like pre ban ivory will still be legal to trade within the entire USA.
Here is the new proposed regulation:
Ivory Ban February 11, 2014
Update April 23, 2015
The following is a reprinted update from the Elephant Protection Association
The Advisory Council on Wildlife Trafficking held a public meeting in Washington D.C. on April 23, 2015. A recurring theme in this meeting was the need to prosecute wildlife traffickers. While rhinos and other species were discussed, ivory was again a major point of discussion. The danger in these discussions is that the government expands the definition of illegal ivory so it can go after otherwise innocent Americans to boost prosecution statistics and justify bigger budgets.
The Council and NGOs want more government money to advance their cause. While other species were discussed, elephants and ivory kept coming up because they are the most effective fund raisers NGOs have to solicit money from donors and governments.
There were lots of frustrated animal activists at the meeting. They brought sponsors of the New Jersey Ivory Ban to promote state efforts to ban ivory, but it was clear that they were unhappy that no other state level bans have passed. Part of the “ask” for a bigger share of the federal budget is to fund more public relations efforts to link ivory with elephant poaching, which they hope will increase pressure on states. To help justify more money, they are also increasingly exaggerating the link between terrorism and domestically traded legal ivory.
These groups also expressed a lot of frustration at the meeting because USFWS has not yet published its regulation revoking the Special Rule for African Elephants. The FWS representative said he expected a regulation “soon” and that it would contain “de minimis exemptions” for “very small amounts of ivory” that he said would satisfy the legal ivory owners whom the Service has spoken to over the past year.
Unfortunately, the representative did not disclose what those exemptions would be. If they are anything like we have seen come up in state legislation or in FWS guidance to date, then they are unlikely to satisfy anyone.
Much more was discussed at the meeting, and you can download our response to this meeting here: AdvisoryCouncilResponseLetterFor150423Meeting.pdf
. The hard work of all of our groups to stop state level ivory bans and force the federal government to carefully evaluate its next steps have been effective at slowing down bad policy.
What this last meeting made clear is the ivory ban has devolved to being all about money. In fact, Council Member David Hayes suggested that the next Advisory Council meeting should be focused on how much more money they want from the government to fund things like more propaganda (so-called demand destruction) and widespread prosecutions.
The only way to fight this is to remain persistent in our efforts to fight against ivory bans on every level. We must continue to educate legislators, show up at hearings, and expose the exaggerations & bad policies that overzealous activists are using to demonize ivory. As expressed in my comments to the Advisory Council
, not only will innocent Americans needlessly lose property and cultural treasures, but elephants will be condemned to even greater hostility and threat of extinction if all possibility of economic value to local African communities is stripped away.
To show how bad things could get, New York, which already passed its own ivory ban, is now considering a law that would eliminate ivory exemptions in its ban AND criminalize possession of ivory
. This should be a lesson to anyone who thinks they can carve out an exemption to protect themselves at the expense of other ivory owners. That strategy will only lead to weakening the overall effort of legal ivory owners and businesses so the temporarily favored few can be picked off in the future.
OLDER NEWS FROM THE BEGINNING
Update March 25th, 2014
Many of you are wondering if the new ban will actually be implemented. Will the new ban be restrictive? Will dealing in ivory be easy? Well, this may answer your questions: "Officials with the United States Fish and Wildlife Service, which plans to have the new regulations in place in June, said drastic measures are needed to help curb the slaughter of African elephants."
And, for further reading here is the most recent story on the subject: Limits on Ivory Sales, Meant to Protect Elephants, Set Off Wide Concerns
Update May 15th, 2014
Here is the proposed new regulations where owners must prove any ivory being sold is pre ban.Next Steps in Commercial Elephant Ivory Trade Ban
Update May 28th, 2014
Here it is!! The actual Revision of Regulations which will take effect on June 26, 2014.A Rule by the Fish and Wildlife Service on 05/26/2014
Update June 10th, 2014
Here are the results from the June 9, 2014 advisory council meeting:June 9, 2014 Advisory Council Meeting
This should make it all easier to understand.Here is a great Q & A Section
And lastly, here is part of the regulation showing its questionable, confusing and lack of clarity in the wording. How can someone be expect to provide its "use after" and comply or be expected to provide something that never existed in the first place? The "use after" was never an issue nor part of any import documents, permits or anything."Exception: If the specimen was lawfully imported, with no restrictions on its use after import, before the species was listed as described in paragraphs (a), (b), or (c) of this section, you may continue to use the specimen as indicated for paragraphs (d), (e) and (f) of this section provided you can clearly demonstrate (using written records or other documentary evidence) that your specimen was imported prior to the CITES listing, with no restrictions on its use after import. If you are unable to clearly demonstrate that this exception applies, the specimen may be used only for noncommercial purposes".
Update June 26th, 2014
In conversations with attorneys, other merchants, artisans and especially FWS we've concluded that the new regulations do not affect pre ban ivory trade within the USA. Business and interstate commerce within the USA as usual.
Update July 9th, 2014
On Wednesday, July 9, 2014 the U.S. House Appropriations Interior Subcommittee approved the FY15 Interior and Environment Appropriations bill. Specifically the bill contains the following language:"None of the funds made available by this or any other Act may be used to draft, prepare, implement, or enforce any new or revised regulation or order that —
(1) prohibits or restricts, within the United States, the possession, sale, delivery, receipt, shipment, or transportation of ivory that has been law fully imported into the United States;
(2) changes any means of determining, including any applicable presumptions concerning, when ivory has been lawfully imported; or
(3) prohibits or restricts the importation of ivory that was lawfully importable into the United States as of February 1, 2014".
This action is a significant step towards protecting all lawful ivory owners. As this bill progresses, we will continue to provide updates as developments occur.
Unsolicited Hate Mail
We receive our portion of hate email which are all agenda driven. Each hate email is a clone of the previous one. They're all the same. They're all out for donations to support a cause so that they can draw a salary from their agenda driven campaigns. They don't want to do any real work for a living so they become agenda driven.
Here is a recent hate email from some BOZO in the UK. You can feel the hate and bile that these people spew. We've commented in parenthesis to show you how asinine these people truly are.
Re: your comments on the new legislation banning ivory in the US
The new legislation banning all ivory trade in the US, with a couple of exceptions for bonafide antique ivory and two hunting trophies per person, is welcomed enthusiastically (really!)
by all those who are fighting hard (with other people’s money through donations that you dubiously draw as overpaid employees)
to save elephants from extinction indeed, all those you dismissively choose to call ‘treehuggers’ (rightfully so)
We are not as ignorant as you suggest (inferiority complex which they all exhibit)
. Yes, we do know the difference between pre-ban ivory and illegal ivory (no you don’t; if you did we wouldn't be here)
. We also know that allowing any form of trade in ivory, whether it’s pre-ban or not, only perpetuates the cycle of demand and supply (you’re clueless to how business operates)
, whatever spurious arguments (your argument is spurious and agenda driven so you can claim large salaries from your donations)
you may come up with to argue otherwise.
You know perfectly well that provenance documentation can be easily faked (not here in the USA)
, as indeed can the new age of ivory, by methods such as tea-staining and so on (only a moron such as yourself would not know the difference)
. I doubt you do any further forensic tests (not needed as we know what we are purchasing)
on the ivory you buy to prove their age and source. So you know perfectly well that the distinction between pre-ban and illegal ivory is not as clear-cut (yes it is but you can’t believe that as it doesn’t meet the needs of your agenda)
as you make it sound .. in fact, there is no doubt you have raked in big profits thanks to this grey area (wrong again as the USA Government does a fine job of policing the marketplace).
You also know that ivory consumers are not all fully aware of the letter of the law about selling and buying ivory, and even less about the nature of the poaching crisis that is driving elephants to extinction at the rate of 100 being slaughtered every day (this is the most ridiculous statement as you want people to believe 36,500 elephants are being slaughtered annually – not so, just more lies)
... and that they will believe whatever you tell them about your ivory.
It is also clear from your comments that you are a right-wing Republican (nope, wrong again as I am an independent),
as you threw into the mix some criticisms of Obama’s healthcare reform (yes, it’s a form of socialism)
, and are also clearly a climate-change denier (because it doesn’t exist except to you agenda driven pinheads who earn a living through donations)
since you criticized Obama’s climate-change fund in California. The fact that you can say something so ignorant as a cold winter shows climate change isn’t happening merely shows how totally ignorant you are of the science behind global warming. (if it’s cold, it's global warming, if it’s warm, it’s global warming, if there is a drought, it’s global warming and if there are floods it is global warming. Sorry you cannot have it all ways).
Along with many thousands of others, I am delighted to hear that the new legislation is closing down your elephant ivory business and no doubt all other ivory sellers in the US (they are all very hateful).
You call us people ‘with an agenda’ but you and ivory sellers like you have your own agenda too – which is to keep selling ivory at whatever cost (yes because we do nothing wrong selling perfectly legal ivory brought in to the USA decades ago. This ivory is quite legal)
. You say you love elephants but if that were true you wouldn’t have been dealing in and profiting from a product that was produced by them being brutally slaughtered – that’s the bottom line (you are certainly ignorant about how pre ban ivory was harvested)
. Good riddance to your business. (and may God bless you for your ignorance)
Below is a typical hate email by the dumb tree-huggers who write what they are told to write without any understanding of the issue. Not only are they told what to write but they are just ignorant people who have no vocabulary, grammar or punctuation skills. Here is their stupidity and pay special attention to "rich bastards". Do you see that they are being spoon fed here! God must certainly love stupid people; perhaps that's why he made so many of them."STOP SUPPORTING THIS MADNESS……HOW WOULD U FEEL IF SOMEONE CHOPPED YOU'RE FACE OFF AND TOOK OUT YOUR MOUTH AND EYES AND SOLD THEM FOR MONEY TO RICH BASTARDS, OPEN YOU'RE EYES!!!….THIS IS A HORRIBLE SITE, IF THIS BULLSHIT POACHING CONTINUES ELEPHANTS WILL BE EXTINCT JUST LIKE THE BLACK RHINOS HAVE BECOME EXTINCT FROM POACHING! DO YOU NOT CARE ABOUT ANIMALS AT ALL???? THEESE POACHERS ARE GOING TO GET WHATS COMING TO THEM, SOON….!"