Polar Bear Victory

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Polar Bear Victory, July 2011

[Ed. Note: A minor victory offering some protections for polar bears, keeping them on the official Endangered Species list. However, it is only a temporary reprieve from the real long-lasting impacts that climate change will have on these magnificent creatures. The more people who go vegan, the sooner we can begin to decrease the impacts of factory farming of billions of animals on our air, land and water.]

From Center for Biological Diversity
July 2011

This ruling is a huge win for our long-running work to protect these mighty Arctic bears who are struggling to survive while facing rapidly melting sea ice and oil companies that want to drill in the heart of their habitat.

The Center is looking ahead to another pending court decision on our challenge to a Bush administration rule that exempted greenhouse gases from being addressed as part of the plan to protect polar bears.

A federal judge just ruled that polar bears must stay protected under the Endangered Species Act.

This ruling is a huge win for our long-running work to protect these mighty Arctic bears who are struggling to survive while facing rapidly melting sea ice and oil companies that want to drill in the heart of their habitat.

We wouldn't have won this critical victory without the tens of thousands of actions you've taken and the support you've given us over the years to keep fighting in court for the majestic white bear -- thank you.

Since 2005, when the Center for Biological Diversity authored the federal petition to list the polar bear under the Endangered Species Act, we've led the fight to keep the bears from extinction.

When our efforts finally paid off in 2008 and the Center and allies won a “threatened” listing for polar bears, we knew it was going to be a long fight to fully protect the bears and their habitat.

And when the state of Alaska, big-game hunters and others went to court this year to try to strip Endangered Species Act protections from polar bears, we knew we had to put everything we had into the fight. Our expert attorneys rose to the polar bear's defense in court, outlining the urgent protections needed to save them from the terrible effects of global warming.

On Thursday, U.S. District Judge Emmet Sullivan rejected Alaska's arguments and said the decision to protect bears because of melting Arctic sea ice was well supported. He also noted the plight of the polar bear was “troubling.”

Even as we take a moment with you to celebrate the court decision, we know our work is far from over. Scientists tell us that, left unchecked, warming could melt so much sea ice that two-thirds of the world's polar bears, including all those in Alaska, will probably be gone in 40 years.

The Center is looking ahead to another pending court decision on our challenge to a Bush administration rule that exempted greenhouse gases from being addressed as part of the plan to protect polar bears.

As always, we'll keep you updated on our efforts to secure the lasting survival of polar bears and count on your help to take action when we need it.

Thank you again for the part you played in helping secure this win for polar bears. We couldn't have done it without you.