Busting the polar bear myth

Mon, 2007-09-10 12:11Kevin Grandia
Kevin Grandia's picture

Busting the polar bear myth

Joseph Romm has a great article today on the grim prediction that polar bears will be extinct by 2030.

The myth is that polar populations are increasing. Far from it, Romm explains. 

Previous Comments

What ever happened to that infamous “peer reviewed” paper by Tim Ball that was supposed to appear sometime this year?

Was that one that Exxon had paid for and Willie Soon had led?

If so, I don’t know what happened to it – probably didn’t make it through peer review. 

http://www.cbc.ca/national/blog/video/environmentscience/melting_arctic_ice.html

There’s a letter in today’s Globe and Mail, by Ryan Kerbel, pointing out that when the top predator goes, it affects the entire food chain. With no polar bears, the seal population would go up and thus the fish population would go down, so there would be more alge growth removing oxygen from the ocean, thus killing other marine species and eventually affecting oxygen in the air.

I wonder though if it’s more complicated; if the polar bears die from the change in their habitat, will the seal population also decrease because of the change in their habitat? Would the fish population go down, or would they be replaced by other species used to warmer water? Then, if the weather harms our crops, would humans be taking more fish to eat from the Arctic?

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This is a guest post by David Suzuki.

The Amazon rainforest is magnificent. Watching programs about it, we’re amazed by brilliant parrots and toucans, tapirs, anacondas and jaguars. But if you ever go there expecting to be overwhelmed by a dazzling blur of activity, you’ll be disappointed. The jungle has plenty of vegetation — hanging vines, enormous trees, bromeliads and more — and a cacophony of insects and frogs. But much of the activity goes on at night or high up in the canopy.

Films of tropical forests don’t accurately reflect the reality of the ecosystems....

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