Western aid to Africa helps these countries build roads, which are greatly needed to distribute food and medicine. But these new roads also make it easier for ivory poachers to reach the interior and kill large numbers of elephants.

In LiveScience.com, Jeanna Bryner quotes biologist Stephen Blake as saying, “Unmanaged roads are highways of death for forest elephants?It is not the physical effect of the road that is the issue?forest elephants actually like roadside vegetation?rather it is the fact that unmanaged roads bring people, with their guns and ammunition.”

Other countries have put pressure on the US to amend our drug laws, which are causing crime waves in drug producing areas. Perhaps we should put pressure on China, in order to get them to reduce their reliance on powered ivory for medicinal purposes.

Art credit: gimp-savvy.com

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