Sri Lankan authorities begin destroying seized ivory

COLOMBO, Sri Lanka -- Sri Lankan authorities on Tuesday began destroying a shipment of African ivory seized three years ago, following a ceremony at which Buddhist monks gave the slaughtered elephants blessings for a better rebirth.

See Full Article

The ivory was traced to northern Mozambique and Tanzania and has been valued by Sri Lankan customs at 368 million rupees (more than $2.5 million). Officials said the ivory, which was seized at Colombo's port, was being transported to Dubai through Kenya and Sri Lanka.

The destruction took place in an elaborate ceremony in Colombo attended by politicians, officials and diplomats.

The 359 tusks weighing a total of 1,529 kilograms (3,370 pounds) were crushed by machines into smaller pieces that will later be burned to ash in high-temperature ovens at a cement factory.

Before the crushing, Buddhist monks chanted blessings to make merit for the elephants so they could have a better rebirth.

John Scanlon, secretary general of the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora, was among those who participated in the ritual, which is usually performed by family members at Buddhist funerals.

Scanlon said the approximate value of the annual illegal trade in wildlife worldwide is $20 billion. The figure excludes timber and marine trade and mostly consists of ivory and rhino horns.

"Today's event also provides a very public opportunity to warn those people who trade illegally in ivory that the age and origin of the contraband can now be readily identified through the use of modern forensics, making prosecution and conviction far more likely," Scanlon said in a speech.

"Illegal trade in ivory is shifting from high profit, low risk to high risk, low profit," he said.



Advertisements

Latest Tech & Science News

  • Artificial intelligence shows unprecedented detail in global fishing activities

    Tech & Science CBC News
    Researchers are learning more than ever before about the effects humans are having on global fish stocks. It's all thanks to a website — funded in part by actor Leonardo DiCaprio's foundation — that tracks ships and uses a type of artificial intelligence to figure out incredible detail in worldwide fishing patterns. Source
  • 'Tiny trash' a big problem for Canada's shorelines

    Tech & Science CBC News
    Small pieces of plastic and foam topped a list of types of litter found along Canada's shorelines last year, beating out the previous year's winner — cigarette butts. That's because this is the first year The Great Canadian Shoreline Cleanup, a conservation effort between the non-profit group Ocean Wise and the World Wildlife Fund of Canada, have counted the pieces of what the groups call "tiny trash. Source
  • How many new drugs rely on government-funded science? All of them

    Tech & Science CBC News
    This is an excerpt from Second Opinion, a weekly roundup of eclectic and under-the-radar health and medical science news emailed to subscribers every Saturday morning. If you haven't subscribed yet, you can do that by clicking here. Source
  • Police sketch created with DNA technology is potentially useless or even misleading, says scientist

    Tech & Science CBC News
    Calgary police hired a U.S. biotech company to create a picture of a woman using only her DNA, but a scientist says the evidence behind the technology to create the image simply isn't there. Source
  • Neanderthals, not humans, created these cave paintings in Spain

    Tech & Science CBC News
    From the murky depths of Spanish caves comes a surprising insight: Neanderthals created art. That's been proposed before, but experts say two new studies finally give convincing evidence that our evolutionary cousins had the brainpower to make artistic works and use symbols. Source
  • Neanderthals, not modern humans, created these cave paintings

    Tech & Science CBC News
    From the murky depths of Spanish caves comes a surprising insight: Neanderthals created art. That's been proposed before, but experts say two new studies finally give convincing evidence that our evolutionary cousins had the brainpower to make artistic works and use symbols. Source
  • Science Says: European art scene began with Neanderthals

    Tech & Science CTV News
    NEW YORK - New discoveries in some Spanish caves give the strongest evidence yet that Neanderthals created art. The key finding was the age of some previously known cave paintings and decorated seashells. European researchers found they were created before our species arrived in Europe. Source
  • Fishing industry has massive global footprint: study

    Tech & Science CTV News
    HALIFAX -- Global fishing efforts are so wide ranging that fleets covered more than 460 million kilometres in 2016 -- a distance equal to going to the moon and back 600 times. That startling revelation is contained in a newly published study in Science that quantifies fishing's global footprint for the first time. Source
  • Twitter bars tactics used by 'bots' to spread false stories

    Tech & Science CBC News
    Twitter Inc. said on Wednesday it would no longer allow people to post identical messages from multiple accounts, cracking down on a tactic that Russian agents and others have allegedly used to make tweets or topics go viral. Source
  • Social media may be pushing more millennials to turn to cosmetic procedures, clinics say

    Tech & Science CBC News
    At age 27, Vanessa Alaumary has already had several cosmetic procedures. She started getting injectables a few years ago and says many of her friends also started in their early 20's. Selfie craze triggers surge in cosmetic procedures Source