We are obviously happy to see that The Norwegian Ministry of Agriculture proposes to ban elephants from Norwegian circuses. We have been involved in this discussion since we moved to Norway in late 2004, partly by feeding the relevant authorities, including members of Parliament, with sound science.
We have for some time felt convinced that the government body dealing with this issue (The Norwegian Food Safety Authority!) would end up accepting that elephants should no longer be in Norwegian circuses, but we also knew that they might give the circuses some years to adjust to this legislation.
We are not happy with the 5 year transition period (until 1. January 2015), even though we are only talking about 2 to 4 elephants. The proposed ban means that the department has accepted that elephants in circuses suffer - it makes no sense to let this continue for another 5 years. The hearing deadline is 18. January 2010, and we will argue for a shortening of the "transition period".
The proposed ban is an important step forward for a progressive nation - and a victory for elephants. Hopefully we will soon be able to say goodbye to the last elephant in Norway... You can read more about ElephantVoices views on elephants in circuses here.
"They Don't Want To Be In Show Business"
Original song by Bill Dyer, sung by JoAnne Worley, edited by Sandra Mohr & produced by our friend and animal advocate Patty Shenker.