why dont they put fake ice bergs out in the ocean for the polar bears since they are drowning?

But they cant be made out of plastic, but something withstandable to the water and easy for them to climb up if they are in the water and trying to get on a ice berg. And then they can travel to find more food.



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    This idea has been proposed to the U.S. government in 2006 and has not been approved.  Polar bears are not an essential species on Earth and the government is not going to spend mass amounts of money constructing gigantic ice burgs in order to help them out.  Turning forestland into a preserve is very different than constructing artificial platforms to support a wild species.  Our government wants to protect threatened species, but their is only so much they can do with their funding.

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      Is there a place where species are defined as “essential” or not? And who determines it? Essential to whom? If humans, that seems to be in question and debatable. Environment Canada put together a study late last year to determine the bear’s economic value as a national icon. In Northern Manitoba polar bears bring in much of the revenue based on tourism and they also represent a market for lucrative sport hunting. I feel unsure of the credibility of the website you cite here.

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      I’m referring to the essential survival of an ecosystem. Polar bears are the top of their food chain, and losing them would not necessarily detract from the quality of life from the species below them.

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    To add to brettleverett‘s answer, designing these fake ice bergs presents significant challenges. One challenge is making sure these fake ice bergs are stable in the water. If they simply float towards the shore in clusters instead of being strategically spread out, it won’t help the polar bears and will simply be additional water pollution no matter how you look at it. Another challenge is making sure that these fake icebergs won’t disrupt other habitats (i.e. have pieces break off that are eaten by turtles, thus clogging up their digestive system and causing them to starve.)

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    It’s a simple engineering question.  What would you make these platforms out of, how large would they be, and how much would it cost?  You want several miles of floating platforms that won’t rot, crack, sink, or do damage to fish?  I’m guessing hundreds of millions of dollars just to get started.  Maybe billions of dollars to do it right.  For a fraction of that cost, I think the US government would rather put all those polar bears in a refuge in Alaska where they’d live in captivity and be fed by humans.  Not ideal from an ecological standpoint, but it would keep them alive from an evolutionary standpoint.  Meanwhile we can spend those billions of dollars on human problems.  I’d personally prefer to spend it on the polar bears, but polar bears don’t vote, unfortunately.

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    Its illogical in the sense of sustainability to construct fake aspects of the environment in order to maintain a species. Polar bears need ice, not things manufactured to look like ice. If the ecosystem has changed, we can’t try to pretend like it hasn’t. What, then, would be sustained in the ecological sense, if the creature you are protecting no longer is a part of a natural ecosystem? We might as well put observation decks on the water and turn it into a polar bear zoo! This debate brings up a good point, which is that trying to turn back the clock on a changing environment lacks an understanding of the importance of ecological systems.

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