New York (August 19, 2014) – The following statement was issued by John Calvelli, WCS Executive Vice President of Public Affairs and Director of the 96 Elephants Campaign:

“Today’s landmark study in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, authored by 96 Elephants partner Save the Elephants and other groups, confirms the widespread slaughter of elephants throughout Africa driven by ivory poaching. These tragic numbers underscore the urgency of banning the ivory trade. Recent WCS research has shown that any legal trade of ivory will only embolden organized crime syndicates to continue poaching and smuggling.

“Strong ivory bans recently passed in N.J. and N.Y. give us hope that the political will is there to pass state bans. However, the proposed federal ivory ban is under attack in Congress by the anti-ivory ban supporters. We hope that today’s news showing the loss of 100,000 elephants over the past three years will serve as a wake-up call that now is the time to ban ivory before these magnificent creatures are lost forever.

“The 96 Elephants campaign – named for the number of elephants killed each day – will continue its work through its 160 coalition partners, including 120 North American Zoos, to stop the killing, stop the trafficking and stop the demand.”

To learn more about the elephant crisis and how to help eradicate the demand for ivory, visit

Stephen Sautner: 718-220-3682;
Max Pulsinelli: 718-220-5182;
96 Elephants
WCS is leading global efforts to save Africa’s elephants and end the current poaching and ivory trafficking crisis. In September, WCS launched its 96 Elephants campaign ( to amplify and support the Clinton Global Initiative (CGI) “Partnership to Save Africa’s Elephants” by stopping the killing, stopping the trafficking, and stopping the demand. The WCS campaign focuses on: securing effective moratoria on domestic sales of ivory; bolstering elephant protection; and educating the public about the link between ivory consumption and the elephant poaching crisis.

Wildlife Conservation Society (WCS)
WCS saves wildlife and wild places worldwide through science, conservation action, education, and inspiring people to value nature. VISION: WCS envisions a world where wildlife thrives in healthy lands and seas, valued by societies that embrace and benefit from the diversity and integrity of life on earth. To achieve our mission, WCS, based at the Bronx Zoo, harnesses the power of its Global Conservation Program in more than 60 nations and in all the world’s oceans and its five wildlife parks in New York City, visited by 4 million people annually. WCS combines its expertise in the field, zoos, and aquarium to achieve its conservation mission. Visit:;;; follow: @theWCS