4/30/2014 8:18:02 PM

Wednesday Shout-Outs, April 30, 2014

We love hearing from people who are making a difference for polar bears in their communities. This week we give shouts for efforts ranging from plastic bag reduction efforts to educational outreach and bike commutes:

  • The Cleveland Metroparks Zoo created an Earth globe from plastic bags to help bring home the message that we can each do our part to minimize our impact on the planet by modifying our habits. As part of their outreach, they talked with zoo visitors about the environmental impact of plastic bags and gave out reusable bags as an alternative.
  • Even if you don't speak Korean, you'll feel the power of this video by a group of South Korean students. They made their own reusable polar bear bags and shared them with those willing to take a pledge to reduce their carbon footprints. So far, they've collected over 13,000 names—and counting!
  • Zookeepers at the Maryland Zoo in Baltimore finished their recycled "plastic bag" bear and put it on display in their Polar Bear Watch exhibit. "It took 2,000 bags to create—exactly how many plastic shopping bags an average family of four uses each year," a zoo spokesperson said. "You can help species like polar bears simply by choosing reusable bags."
  • Andrew Fore, one of our Arctic Ambassadors, spent Earth Day at a local elementary school giving six presentations on polar bears and the Arctic to over 800 students. During his talks, he challenges the students to green their behavior—and, boy, does he get results! One school that he visited went on to win a national green award.
  • Caitlynn Turner, one of our Climate Alliance grads, created a website about climate change, reducing your carbon footprint, polar bears, and how she got involved and helped. She presented the website to her class as part of her final project in her university English class. 
  • And, finally, May is National Bike Month ... so what better time to give a shout to Philip Fensterer, one of our Climate Alliance grads and a keeper at the Oregon Zoo? Not only did he start a highly successful bike to work challenge at the zoo, he's also formed a Cycle for Change League to allow Arctic Ambassador Centers across the country to compete with each other.

You can become part of the momentum by taking our Pedal for Polar Bears Challenge in honor of Endangered Species Day—and then check out the other challenges in our Save Our Sea Ice campaign.

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