Wolf Song of Alaska News

Alaska's Palin Says Polar Bears Not Endangered

Alaska Digest / Anchorage Daily News / October 31, 2007

JUNEAU -- Gov. Sarah Palin has reiterated her administration's opposition to a proposed listing of polar bears under the Endangered Species Act.

In a recent statement, Palin said too little is understood about global climate change and its effect on polar bear populations to support listing the bears under the act at this time.

"The listing of a currently healthy species based entirely on highly speculative and uncertain climate and ice modeling and equally uncertain and speculative modeling of possible impacts on a species would be unprecedented," Palin said in a letter to Interior Secretary Dirk Kempthorne.

Studies released by the U.S. Geological Survey in September predicted that an ongoing loss of summer sea ice could decimate polar bear populations within the next 50 years. The bears depend on the Arctic ice pack for hunting seals.

Palin's letter, and other documents submitted by state agencies, say international agreements and the Marine Mammal Protection Act afford protection for the bears.


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