Dear Friends of the Spirit Bear,
There are two major preventable threats to the spirit bear: an urgent need for a meaningful sanctuary in their last intact ecosystem and the long term concern of oil spills from tanker traffic in the waters within this wilderness.
Today, we need your help on both fronts to save the spirit bear.
2. URGENT REQUEST: Register by October 6th to have your voice heard by the Canadian government review panel that will decide if tanker traffic will be allowed in spirit bear waters. You don’t have to attend the panel in person and you don’t have to live in Canada, but this will be the best forum to be heard on this issue.
SANCTUARY FOR THE SPIRIT BEAR
The fall coastal bear trophy hunt has begun. With its start, the future of the spirit bear is in jeopardy.
While it is illegal to hunt the white Kermode bear, within 98% of its range – including protected areas – it is legal to hunt the black Kermode bear that carries and produces the unique white gene. A loss of either bear is devastating to the genetic diversity of this subspecies.
Moreover, the excessive trophy hunting of grizzly bears is forcing these bruins into Kermode habitat and creating new predators for the white bear.
Our goal is to create a sanctuary for the spirit bear by conserving the final, unprotected third of its last intact habitat (the Green-Sheep Passage/Tolmie Operating Area) and ensuring this entire wilderness is a true sanctuary, free from trophy hunting.
The Spirit Bear Youth Coalition is asking everyone who cares about the future of this remarkable creature to please take a moment to write British Columbia Premier Christy Clark and, if you live in BC, your MLA in order to voice your support for the creation of a sanctuary for the Kermode.
We believe that this issue is a family values issue and a priority for BC families and, indeed, families globally: Our decision makers need to know that you agree.
For more information: The Case to Stop the Coastal Bear Trophy Hunt
THREAT OF OIL SPILLS IN SPIRIT BEAR WATERS
The long term threat to both the spirit bear and the Great Bear Rainforest as a whole is a proposed new oil pipeline that would send oil tanker traffic through the dangerous and ecologically sensitive waters of the spirit bear’s last intact ecosystem.
To be clear: the Spirit Bear Youth Coalition is not against the proposed Enbridge pipeline – we are in favor of shifting the pipeline route so oil tanker traffic does not travel through spirit bear waters.
If the Exxon Valdez tanker-caused oil spill in Alaska or the BP oil rig explosion in the Gulf of Mexico taught us anything, it’s that unthinkable accidents happen and, when they do, the consequences can be both devastating and beyond repair.
Two major shipping accidents have happened in recent years in the narrow passages surrounding the spirit bear’s habitat – the same exact waters Enbridge oil tankers will travel.
Given the spirit bear’s dependence on its marine ecosystem – salmon, the region’s lifeblood, especially – any oil spill will almost certainly wipe out the genetically unique subspecies.
As global citizens, we all have a stake in the future of this globally critical wilderness. Your voice must be heard in this debate and we need everyone to work with Canada to find a reasonable balance that creates jobs, increases the nation’s economic potential, and protects a bear far to important to the world to lose.
Help the Spirit Bear Youth Coalition articulate our balanced position. Pipeline and oil exports: YES. Pipeline and oil exports within the land of the spirit bear: NO.
For more information: The Case for an Alternative Pipeline Route to Protect the Spirit Bear
FIVE WAYS TO SAVE THE SPIRIT BEAR:
1) Email, write and/or phone BC Premier Christy Clark and your elected representative
2) Sign the petition to stop this hunt
3) Register to be heard during the Canadian government’s review panel on oil tankers in spirit bear waters
4) Adopt-a-Spirit Bear and keep up-to-date on our campaign to create a sanctuary for the spirit bear
5) Consider a one-time donation to the Spirit Bear Youth Coalition to aid our volunteer-run campaign
FIVE WAYS TO STAY UP-TO-DATE:
1) Follow us on Twitter @SpiritBearYouth
2) Join our Facebook group
3) Visit www.spiritbearyouth.org and www.adoptaspiritbear.org
4) Become a member
5) Sign-up for our new education program
FOR MORE UPDATES:
Visit our news section to see recent media coverage from the likes of the Globe and Mail; look at new images captured by National Geographic for their recent cover story on the spirit bear; learn about our public outreach efforts in places such as Alaska; find out how you can participate in upcoming events hosted by our partners including the Jane Goodall Institute; and help us celebrate our successes that you’ve made possible – most recently Explore Magazine’s Top 30 Under 30 and Top Green Leader distinctions.
And be sure to watch the Global TV Spirit Bear Series featured recently on the Newshour!
Thank you for your continued support of our efforts to save the spirit bear. I truly believe that, together, we can and will save our spirit bear for generations to come.
Founder and Chairman, Spirit Bear Youth Coalition