Take action: Ask President Obama to protect the polar bear's critical habitat from global warming and oil drilling.
The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service has identified approximately 200,000 square miles of critical habitat for the polar bear.
However, the Department of Interior continues to allow oil and gas drilling in the Arctic, including Shell Oil's plans to drill in the Beaufort and Chuchcki Seas, home to many of our remaining polar bears.
A strong critical habitat designation will play a vital role in ensuring the magnificent polar bear will be able to survive in America's Arctic. Submit a public comment to the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service asking them to permanently protect polar bear critical habitat and prohibit oil and gas drilling projects there.
The entire coastal plain of the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge should be included in the final critical habitat designation. One of the crown jewels of our National Wildlife Refuge System, the Arctic Refuge also provides crucial denning habitat for the polar bear. Currently, part of the coastal plain is included in the proposed critical habitat designation for the polar bear. However, because the bear relies on the entire coastal plain, the designation should be extended to cover all 1.5 million acres.
In addition, risky, aggressive oil development across America's Arctic will drastically harm the polar bear habitat. Please permanently protect polar bear critical habitat and prohibit oil and gas drilling projects there.
I strongly encourage you to approve the critical habitat designation and include the entire coastal plain of the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge. The polar bear needs and deserves the strongest protection the Endangered Species Act can provide.
Thank you for taking this step toward protecting the polar bear and the unique Arctic environment it needs to survive.