AGI – In less than 80 years, all polar bear specimens found on Earth could be lost due to climate change. The alarming hypothesis comes from a study, published in the journal Nature Climate Change and conducted by experts from the University of Toronto in Ontario, Canada, who claim that some populations have already reached their survival limits while ocean sea ice Arctic continues to decline. “Polar bears – explains Stephen Molnar of the University of Toronto – use sea ice to hunt seals, and without this precious resource, predators are forced to wander long distances or to the shore, where they find it difficult to find food and feed the “puppies.
The author claims that the white bear represents the symbol of climate change. “Polar bears are among the endangered species in the list drawn up by the International Union for the Conservation of Nature (IUCN) – continues the researcher – they are already on top of the world, without ice they no longer have a natural habitat. Our work represents an estimate of the timing related to the survival of this precious species “.
The team used a number of bear energy consumption models to calculate the limit on their resistance. “We have shown that younger specimens are exposed to more serious threats – says Steven Amstrup, chief scientist of Polar Bears International and second signature of the article – because future mothers will not have enough body fat to produce milk. According to our results, in some areas of the Arctic this phenomenon may have already started. “
Scientists stress the importance of taking immediate action to remedy the current situation. “The efforts made are still not enough – observes Amstrup – but if the societies and nations of the world join forces we can save the species, but the benefits would obviously also be to our advantage”. The researcher argues that a scenario of high greenhouse gas emissions like the one we are experiencing today could lead to the disappearance of polar bears by 2100, with sea ice declining with an average 10-year rate of 13 percent since the late 1970s. “If we can respect the Paris and Montreal agreements – concludes Molnar – several populations will be lost anyway, but we can and must intervene to stop this decline”.