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Photo: Stewart

“It wasn’t a very good day for conservation,” said one UN spokesman.

Things aren’t looking good for bluefin tuna or polar bears.

Enacting measures to protect bluefin tuna, threatened by overfishing, and polar bears, endangered by the effects of climate change, were on the agenda at the UN conference on endangered species held in Doha, Qatar earlier this week.

The proposed plan for bluefin was to ban international trade, while the plan for the polar bears was to enact protective international agreements to prevent poaching and trade of bear parts.

Both proposals were defeated by a margin that was disturbing to environmentalists: 68 to 20 in the case of the bluefin (with 30 voting members abstaining), and 62 and 48 for the polar bear (with 11 voting members abstaining).

Sharks and elephants are the animals that will be up for vote next, and with the bluefin and polar bear decisions, the future isn’t looking so great for them, either.

Community Connection:

Read more about bluefin tuna as big business in “Mitsubishi’s Back-up Business Plan.”

About The Author

Julie Schwietert

Julie Schwietert Collazo is a writer, editor, researcher, and translator currently in New York, formerly of Mexico City and San Juan.

  • Abbie

    How ridiculous. Kind of makes you lose a little bit of faith in humanity.

  • Hal Amen

    People are poaching polar bears? Aren’t they in enough shit already?

  • Somchai

    Of the many polar bear populations worldwide some are stable, some decreasing, some increasing. In the increasing ones it’s a larges source of revenue for indiginous people, and remember they were living in polar bear habitat long before we started spewing CO2. Eventually I’d think they along with thousands of other species will become extinct due to warming. Big die off coming. Fly less, stay longer, small houses, small cars.

  • peter

    Bluefin is de-licious. yum yum

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