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(CNN) -- At the start of the 1980s there were over a million elephants, during that decade 600,000 were destroyed for ivory products. Today perhaps no more than 400,000 remain across Africa, according to Samuel Wasser of the University of Washington, who is widely recognized as an authority on the subject. It is a tragedy beyond reckoning and humanity needs to pay attention to the plight of the elephants before it is too late.
In the last few years an epic surge in poaching has resumed the killing thanks to the penchant for ivory in the Asian market and especially in China where ivory is now selling for over $1500 a kilo