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.”