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Friday, June 4, 2010

Government of Alberta designates Grizzly bears as "threatened":big deal!!

Source of image: NPS Photo

After waiting and waiting for the Government of the Province of Alberta to act in regards to the
alarming reduction in the Grizzly Bear province, I learned today by reading the Edmonton Journal,
that Sustainable Resource Minister Mel Knight has  designated grizzly bears in the province as now
being "threatened". What does the designation "threatened" mean for the Grizzlies in our province?
According to the Provincial Government's own website at:

"Grizzly bears were recognized in Alberta as a species that may be at risk as early 
as 2000."

I ask, Why then did it take 10 years for the Government of this province
 to finally designate the 
grizzly bears in this province as being "threatened?"

According to the Edmonton Journal article, "there are 700 grizzly bears in Alberta, in contrast, their
are 17,000 Grizzly bears populating the province of British Columbia? How could their be such a 
discrepancy? According to Robert Barclay, a biologist with the University of Calgary, "the
threatened designation doesn't do anything for grizzly bears."

So once again we have the Government of Alberta failing in its behavior towards the people
or animals of this province!!!  Why Mr. Mel Knight did you not go further and show some genuine
concern for a living creature in this province by setting aside areas of  this province for 
"Grizzly Bear habitat"?  Mr. Knight,  What are you going to say to the people of this province, 
 (in particular the children) when the last grizzly bear in Alberta is killed on a railroad line or on
a highway?  Mr. Knight, you had a chance to show the people of this province and  the people of 
this World that you cared about a species of animal which is as Albertan as the humans in this
province, all you have shown is you are only interested in half-hearted measures, and  all
you have shown is you have no long-range plan to ensure that these wonderful
 animals will be found in Alberta in the future!

According to the website:

"The primary way to recover Alberta’s declining grizzly bear populations is to minimize
 contact between people and bears by limiting the number of roads in grizzly-bear habitat
, says a new report."

"Released last Friday by a coalition of conservation groups, the report said the
 outlook for Alberta’s grizzlies “under current conditions is a 98.6 per cent risk 
of population decline by 30 per cent or more over the next 36 years.”

"Titled A Grizzly Challenge, the report was released the same week a grizzly sow 
was killed after being hit by a train in Banff National Park and another sow 
was illegally shot and later put down near Cardston."

"Sarah Elmeligi, senior conservation planner with the Canadian Parks and
 Wilderness Society, one of the sponsors of the report, says the report showcase
s where the government has fallen short on grizzly bear recovery."

Once again it seems resource development companies and "Big Oil"  have
gained precedence over another group within our province.This time this presidence
could mean the extinction of the Grizzly bear from the Province of Alberta in the near 
future,something Mel Knight does not seem to care about, based upon his comments
and actions as Sustainable Resource Minister of  this province!!!! By not designating
area within the province to sustain the population of these bears, Mel Knight should
expect to be held accountable when the last Grizzly bear dies due to human actions!!

According to  scientist Jeff Galius, (MSc.) who authored a report entitled

A Grizzly Challenge: Ensuring a Future for Alberta’s Threatened Grizzlies,
which you can read at:

"a four-step recovery plan should be implemented for the Grizzly bear population in
Alberta.. The steps include:
"1. Limiting annual human-caused mortality to a rate that will allow grizzly bear populations to grow to a size and density that enables long-term persistence...
2. Providing grizzly bear habitat security of between 55 to 68 per cent over an area large enough to maintain a grizzly bear population big enough for long-term persistence.
3. Limiting the density of roads and other routes across the recovery area to avoid unsustainable levels of motorized and non-motorized access.
4. Maintaining demographic connectivity between small population units by preventing the construction of, or
mitigating the effects of, roads, highways, railroads and other sources of fragmentation in grizzly bear habitat.
Although it is not discussed in this report, successful grizzly bear recovery will require an effective and well-funded public education program."
The remedial action is needed, writes the report author, Jeff Gailus, because
"Industrial activity and the road networks required to harvest timber and extract oil and gas are expected to increase dramatically in grizzly bear habitat, as are motorized recreation, and urban and agriculture development."
And if these steps are not implemented to protect the species, what is the possible outcome? The coalition warns
"The outlook for Alberta’s bears under current conditions is a 98.6 per cent risk of population decline by 30 per cent or more over the next 36 years."
If   this warning goes unheeded by Mel Knight and the members of the  Provincial Conservative
Party of Alberta  then we know that he and  "it" are  only interested in Big Oil and resource development,regardless of the cost to  other life forms in this province! How much more selfish
can a group of individuals be?? (especially elected representatives!!!)

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Thoughts worth thinking about

"Our subconscious minds have no sense of humor, play no jokes and cannot tell the difference between reality and an imagined thought or image. What we continually think about eventually will manifest in our lives."-Sidney Madwed

Laws alone can not secure freedom of expression; in order that every woman and man present their views without penalty, there must be spirit of tolerance in the entire population.- Albert Einstein Too often we underestimate the power of a touch, a smile, a kind word, a listening ear, an honest compliment, or the smallest act of caring, all of which have the potential to turn a life around. - Leo Buscaglia

A person's true wealth is the good he or she does in the world. - Mohammed

Our task must be to free ourselves... by widening our circle of compassion to embrace all living creatures and the whole of nature and its beauty. -Albert Einstein

The best way to find yourself, is to lose yourself in the service of others. - Ghandi

The unselfish effort to bring cheer to others will be the beginning of a happier life for ourselves. - Helen Keller

Aim for success, not perfection. Never give up your right to be wrong, because then you will lose the ability to learn new things and move forward with your life. Remember that fear always lurks behind perfectionism. Confronting your fears and allowing yourself the right to be human can, paradoxically, make yourself a happier and more productive person. - Dr. David M. Burns

Life is as dear to a mute creature as it is to man. Just as one wants happiness and fears pain, just as one wants to live and not die, so do other creatures. -His Holiness The Dalai Lama

Mankind's true moral test, its fundamental test (which lies deeply buried from view), consists of its attitude towards those who are at its mercy: animals. And in this respect mankind has suffered a fundamental debacle, a debacle so fundamental that all others stem from it. -

Milan Kundera, The Unbearable Lightness of Being

The worst sin towards our fellow creatures is not to hate them, but to be indifferent to them. That's the essence of inhumanity. -George Bernard Shaw

Ego's trick is to make us lose sight of our interdependence. That kind of ego-thought gives us a perfect justification to look out only for ourselves. But that is far from the truth. In reality we all depend on each other and we have to help each other. The husband has to help his wife, the wife has to help the husband, the mother has to help her children, and the children are supposed to help the parents too, whether they want to or not.-Gehlek Rinpoche Source: "The Best Buddhist Writing 2005 pg. 165

The hostile attitude of conquering nature ignores the basic interdependence of all things and events---that the world beyond the skin is actually an extension of our own bodies---and will end in destroying the very environment from which we emerge and upon which our whole life depends.