Experts disagree on whether or not it is a good thing as far as mammoths' living ancestors, elephants, are concerned. On one hand, the trade may be filling a demand without threatening elephants, while leading to a plethora of new discoveries. On the other, it may be fueling demand for the real thing and harming the natural environment in the process.
However, it can throw up another problem. Many smugglers have tried to pass off illegal elephant tusks as legal mammoth tusks. Hence attempts in the past to make the woolly mammoth a protected species.
It's a tricky dilemma but hopefully one Ball and his team will help solve.