July 20, 2011

Time to drain the swamp.

One of my few physical dead-tree print subscriptions is to a wonderful Agricultural weekly for California, Oregon and Washington called the Capital Press. The July 15th issue has this curious front-page (albeit below the fold) story:
Polar bear listing OK despite 'inconclusive' data
The California Cattlemen's Association has lost a legal challenge against the inclusion of polar bears on the federal list of threatened and endangered species.

A federal judge in Washington, D.C., has ruled the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service was justified in listing the polar bear as threatened under the Endangered Species Act.

The agency listed the species in 2008 after concluding that its sea ice habitat is melting due to climate change caused by greenhouse gas emissions.

The California Cattlemen's Association and the state of Alaska filed legal complaints against the agency, arguing the listing decision wasn't supported by solid evidence.

U.S. District Judge Emmet Sullivan has sided with the federal government, finding that its findings were not irrational.

"It is well settled in the D.C. Circuit that FWS is entitled -- and, indeed, required -- to rely on the best available science, even if that science is uncertain or even 'quite inconclusive,'" according to the ruling.
This attempt at branding political agenda as 'Science' has been quite inconclusive for a long long time. Justice Sullivan is no slouch at all but he is a lawyer and not a scientist -- he needs to get some better advisers. And yes, the Polar Bears are doing just fine -- the decline was due to hunting and now that this is greatly limited, the populations are rebounding. And that iconic photo of the bear on the ice floe? The real story can be found here and here (be sure to follow the links embedded in these two posts -- the backstory shows you how our media works). Posted by DaveH at July 20, 2011 9:33 PM
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