Photo source: © Greenpeace / Daniel Beltra
Faced with growing concerns about the hunting of polar bears in Canada, the Obama administration announced last October, it will again support a ban on the commercial trade of polar bears, whose hides fetch up to $16,000 each on the international market.
The United States is lobbying for an international ban on the trade of polar bear parts, after a previous attempt was defeated at a meeting in Qatar, in 2010.
The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service released a position paper that advocates including the polar bear on the list of species that are subject to the most stringent constraints on international trade, thus, to reclassify the animals under Appendix I — as a species threatened with extinction — of the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species or CITES. That would shut down the commercial trade of hides, teeth and claws.
Polar bears are currently listed under CITES under Appendix II — as a species that is not necessarily now threatened with extinction but may become so unless trade is closely controlled. Permits are required for international trade.
“President Obama, with Russian support, has announced that the U.S. will propose a ban on the global trafficking in polar bear parts at the next meeting of the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species (CITES) in March 2013. But key European nations are still on the fence about stronger polar bear protection — and their votes will decide the outcome. Call on U.K. Prime Minister David Cameron to lead the European Union to a Yes vote that will end the deadly trafficking in polar bears once and for all!” NRDC.
This latest proposal will be voted on by 176 countries at the next CITES meeting in Thailand in March 2013.
“Activists push for international ban on legal trade in polar bear items”, Guardian
US and Russian groups unite to lobby governments after concerns over rise in poaching and melting Arctic ice
“U.S. will push for ban on trade of polar bear parts, “LA Times
Faced with growing concerns about the hunting of polar bears in Canada, the Obama administration announced last October, it will again support a ban on the commercial trade of polar bears. The effect of such a move, if adopted by the 176-nation Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora when it meets in March 2013, would be to prohibit the sale of polar bear furs, claws, teeth and other body parts outside of Canada.