Protection linked to warming; activists say measure has loopholes
The Bush administration on Wednesday declared the polar bear a threatened species, saying it must be protected because of the decline in Arctic sea ice from global warming. But activists were quick to criticize the ruling, saying it was full of loopholes.
Interior Department Secretary Dirk Kempthorne cited dramatic declines in sea ice over the last three decades and projections of continued losses. These declines, he told a news conference, mean the polar bear is a species likely to be in danger of extinction in the near future.
Kempthorne also said, though, that it would be “inappropriate” to use the protection of the bear to reduce greenhouse gases, or to broadly address climate change.
(Continue reading: MSNBC)