Part of Quark's mission is to provide environmentally responsible polar travel through our sustainability initiatives. These initiatives include a range of support, from ensuring supplies and materials are environmentally safe, to supporting charitable and conservation efforts. One of these conservation organizations we embrace is Polar Bears International (PBI). And, right now, you too can actively participate in the protection and preservation of one of our favorite arctic friends, the polar bear.
Celebrate Arctic Sea Ice Day with Polar Bears International
Quark and PBI have teamed up to celebrate Arctic Sea Ice Day, falling this year on July 11, 2015. This day is intended to bring awareness, and call attention to, the effects of Hudson Bay area sea ice loss each summer. Because of the melting sea ice that occurs during these months, Hudson Bay polar bears are being forced ashore.
Help polar bears in the Arctic
The sea ice in the Arctic is especially important in cooling the planet because it reflects the sun's radiation into space. Less ice in the area not only affects polar bears and other wildlife, but contributes to warmer temperatures globally, as well. Part of supporting and participating in Arctic Sea Ice Day involves making sustainable food choices that can help reduce greenhouse gas emissions, which are one cause of sea ice melting.
Activities recommended by PBI include buying locally grown items, reducing waste by only purchasing what you will consume, and supporting food co-ops and farmers' markets. Other actions include buying minimally packaged and processed foods.
More directly, you can also make a pledge to take action on PBI's Save Our Sea Ice Community Page, or make a donation to support PBI initiatives year-round here.
Get to know Quark's polar bear – and help name her!
One of our favorite nine-year-olds in the Hudson's Bay region is our very own “adopted” polar bear, who currently goes by the name X37136.
You can actually track her along with us by visiting the PBI Bear Tracker page here, and watch her and other polar bears as they cross the sea ice to hunt seals (don't worry -- reporting is actually delayed by about a week for the protection of all bears in the program).
Initiatives such as these are important not just for catching an intriguing glimpse of a polar bear's travels, but have been crucial in monitoring sea ice changes over the past 30 years, as well as helping to preserve the arctic region's wildlife.
Weighing in at 233.5 kgs (516 lbs), our bear is a healthy mama, with one cub! She was initially captured and collared on Akimiski Island in 2013. Although PBI was able to identify her den's location, her first collar failed before she left it, so there were no location updates for her again until 2014, when she was re-collared by Ontario Ministry of Natural Resources scientists. It has been fascinating following her journey of nearly 1,864 miles (3,000 km) since then!
Enter to win in our ‘Name Our Polar Bear' contest
Our lovely lady, however, is in need of a name. Help us choose one for her! Enter our ‘Name Our Polar Bear' contest July 11 – Aug 31, 2015, for a chance to win bragging rights to naming a very important member of our family, and a PBI polar bear adoption kit, to adopt and track a polar bear in the wild.
We look forward to your suggestions, and for the chance that you may one day see you very own polar bear, on a true arctic expedition.