Scientists believe that climate change could cause polar bears to go extinct by the end of the century. With higher temperatures and less sea ice, polar bears will not be able to get enough food and provide for their children.
Furthermore, one of the many environmental rollbacks that Trump made during his presidency includes opening up the Arctic, including vital polar bear habitat, to oil drilling and opening up 20 million acres of national preserve lands in Alaska for trophy hunting. Human actions are obviously a huge threat to these amazing animals.
Another huge threat to polar bears is the commercial polar bear skin trade. While some officials and people who partake in polar bear hunting argue that it’s sustainable, experts disagree since “sustainability efforts” usually involve hunting the strongest bears with the best pelts, thereby disrupting natural selection.
According to Samuel Iverson, head of the polar bear management unit for the Canadian Wildlife Service, almost 1,000 polar bears were killed every year from 1963 to 2016.
According to the Natural Resources Defense Council, “32,350 polar bear specimens (polar bears dead or alive, and their parts and derivatives) were traded internationally for all purposes between 2001 and 2010.”
In 1973, Norway joined other countries in signing the Agreement on the Conservation of Polar Bears, however, they are still one of the largest importers of polar bear skins in the world. Norway is considering a ban on the import of polar bear skins. It is the first European country to do so.
If Norway follows through, this will also send a powerful message to other countries that import polar bears skins and trophies.
If the species is to survive, we must do everything that we can to save it – from addressing the climate crisis to ending the hunting of polar bears for the polar bear skin trade.
Sign this petition to encourage Norway to ban the import of polar bear skins!
This article was first published by OneGreenPlanet on 10 November 2020. Lead Image Source : isabel kendzior/Youtube.