Project Green: Bringing polar bears to Louisville could help polar bears around the world


by Ben Pine

Posted on April 25, 2011 at 5:28 PM

Updated Wednesday, Oct 30 at 9:15 AM

Louisville, Ky. (WHAS11) - Bringing polar bears to Louisville could help polar bears around the world

The Louisville Zoo's new $25 million Glacier Run exhibit opens up Tuesday, April 26.

One of the exhibit's main features is "Arki" the polar bear. 

She's found a new home here in Louisville and seems happy and eating well.  We're lucky to have Arki in Louisville since polar bears are now on the threatened species list.

You can learn a lot about polar bears here at the glacier run exhibit at the Louisville Zoo.  You can learn even more from polar bears international; a non-profit organization showing the world and even you in Kentuckiana how to conserve the polar bear population.

Robert Buchanan, president and CEO of polar bears international says climate change will be responsible for the declining polar bear population.  Less ice means fewer habitats and less food for the bears.  He says you don't have to go to the arctic to make a difference.  Basically, just do what you can to go green.  Participate in reforestation, save energy, recycle, and educate.

"We will lose two-thirds of the polar bears that live on the earth by mid-century.  Your grandchildren's grandchildren will be talking about polar bears as if they were dinosaurs, you know, that's not right. By simply changing the way we take care of this precious planet that's been given to us, there is no risk.  There is no downside.  Teaching our kids to cherish the gifts that have been given to us,” said Buchanan.
“Polar bears are a sentinel species, that means they are the canary in the mine shaft, they are the alarm bell for all of us.  There is no colder place for them to go, they're at the top.  So, when they disappear, there is a possibility that other species will have domino effect," he said.

So say hi to Arki the polar bear soon.  Taking your children to the Louisville Zoo - an arctic ambassador center - might be the first step in creating a future generation willing to help this big and beautiful, but threatened species. 

Visit to find out you can help and learn more about polar bears.