Today is International Polar Bear Day, a day when Polar Bears International (PBI) focuses attention on the problems polar bears face in a warming Arctic and how each of us can help. For the second year in a row, they’ve organized a worldwide Thermostat Challenge to celebrate the day, one of seven action events in their Save Our Sea Ice (SOS!) campaign. The goal is to keep polar bears in the Arctic, always.
With the Thermostat Challenge, PBI invites people and businesses around the world to adjust their thermostats up or down by at least two degrees—depending on where they live—and to make this action a habit. They also encourage people to invite others to join and to speak up to elected officials in support of energy-saving measures.
“Our research shows that two-thirds of the world’s polar bears will be gone by the middle of the century unless we take action to greatly reduce greenhouse gas emissions,” says Dr. Steve Amstrup, PBI’s chief scientist. “The Thermostat Challenge raises awareness of how our daily actions impact the polar bear’s sea ice habitat. By taking part in this initiative, we can lower our carbon emissions and show our commitment to action on climate change.”
Participants in the Thermostat Challenge are invited to post photos of their actions on the Community Page of PBI’s Save Our Sea Ice campaign. While there, visitors can also commit to additional actions. Choices include those at the individual, community, and policy levels, all of which are needed to stop climate change.
The Thermostat Challenge is the launch event for PBI’s larger Save Our Sea Ice (SOS!) campaign, a series of conservation challenges that begin on international Polar Bear Day, February 27th, and continue through Polar Bear Week in early November. The SOS! challenges include a Power Down Challenge on Earth Hour, a No Idling Challenge on Earth Day, a Bike Commute Challenge on Endangered Species Day, an Energy Challenge on World Oceans Day, a Green House Grocery List Challenge on Arctic Sea Ice Day, and a Shop Wise Challenge during Polar Bear Week. Each challenge includes actions at the individual, community, and policy levels. The goal of the campaign is to motivate greenhouse gas reductions to stop global warming.
“These challenges are a great way to start making every day a polar bear day,” says Krista Wright, executive director of PBI. “We all make countless daily decisions that have an impact, and it’s important to remember that, collectively, they add up.”
Welcome to the international community’s online resource for World Oceans Day, our planet’s biggest celebration of the ocean. Explore this site for ideas, resources, and information about how you can get involved.