Polar bears, polarized opinions

Do Canada's most famous beasts really need saving?

Polar bear experts are gathering in Winnipeg today for a scientific round table on the future of Canada’s most famous mammal. Jim Prentice, the Environment Minister, told reporters that this a “critical” and “pivotal” time for the polar bear population, and that it’s up to Canadians to ensure their survival in the age of global warming. But while many biologists believe that the iconic beasts are dying by the day, others don’t quite see it that way. Among the vocal doubters is Mike Spence, the mayor of Churchill, Man. (otherwise known as The Polar Bear Capital of the World) who is upset that he wasn’t invited to today’s Environment Canada conference. “I think they’re sending the wrong message by not including us,” he said. Don’t feel too bad, Mr. Mayor. The meeting is off-limits to the media, too.

Winnipeg Free Press