Making 'em Sweat: Delayed Action Further Endangers Polar Bears

Just a brief blurb from a Reuters news article by Deborah Zabarenko from Monday, January 7:

WASHINGTON, Jan 7 (Reuters) - The United States delayed a decision on whether global warming threatens polar bears, saying on Monday new data and public comment required more time. Environmentalists vowed to sue for quicker action.

Apparently, while denying that the potential reason for the exception was that "substantial scientific uncertainty" existed with regard to the threat to the bears, no really adequate answer was provided, and the head of the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service said it would take "as much as a month" to analyze all the pertinent details.

The blog just2hands provides some additional information about the initial decision to consider listing the bears under the Endangered Species Act:

well, a few weeks ago, the dept. of interior finally pulled its head out and put out a proposal to list polar bears as a threatened under the endangered species act ... gee, i wonder what convinced them? was it the reports of polar bear drownings or was it the cannibalism?

You can check the link to the blog for three action sites where you can either sign a pre-written letter or add one of your own.

Important Update: A guest post by Alisha Fowler via WattHead on DailyKos draws attention to some additional -- and more sinister -- reasons behind the delay. Check it out:

the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service was due to make a decision about its "threatened" status by this Wednesday. The Service has, however, delayed the listing for up to one month!

This leaves the bear and its habitat unprotected. Coincidentally, one of the largest oil and gas lease sales is set to occur on February 6, in the Chukchi Sea off of the northwest coast of Alaska –

Does anyone smell a rat burning Bush in the room?


End Notes

1. The polar bear with "Save Me" sign was cropped from a Greenpeace image taken from the just2hands blog and grafted onto a cropped image of a sole polar bear on a small ice floe found at the blog.

2. An excellent cartoon by Bruce Beattie in the Bend Weekly online can be found here: two bears, each on a small ice floe; one asks the other how the New Year resolutions are going, and the other responds "Still looking for a new habitat."

3. A short story with an accompanying illustration, The Polar Bear's Dinner by Chris Rose is a good child-level story, IMO, if folks are looking for a good story to tell kids that even conveys a few interesting facts. It's on the British Council page Learn English Central.

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keep hammering away at this. Personally I think it is a no brainer.

A piece of good news though about White House Drops Appeal on Forest Case

WASHINGTON -- The Bush administration has dropped its appeal of a 2007 court decision that had overturned new management rules for 191 million acres of national forests. Opponents to the rules had argued they weakened protection for wildlife and the environment to the benefit of the timber industry.

The Justice Department notified the 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals this week that it was withdrawing its appeal, saying that the other parties, including the timber industry, would do likewise.
-snip -
Last March, a federal district court in California found that the U.S. Forest Service had bypassed required environmental reviews and provisions under the Endangered Species Act in its overhaul of the management rules, including changes in logging limits, for its national forests.

No celebrating though because Bushco is never to be trusted.

will find their efforts to continue and complete their objectives are thwarted more and more often, and eventually even those they've "succeeded" on will be overturned.

This has got to be the most corrupt and criminally-oriented incarnation of "government" our nation has ever known. The filth cannot be ignored any longer.

It's got to be fully exposed and scrapped off to be burned in the light of day.

on the right, I found Oceana

The video is quite moving. "Our oceans are dying..."

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If it's true that our species is alone in the universe, then I'd have to say that the universe aimed rather low and settled for very little. ~ George Carlin

Thank you for sharing it.