Polar Bears International

4/23/2013 10:58:09 PM

Wednesday Shout-Outs {Environmental Awards, Scientist Outreach, Plastic Bag Bears, and Tree-Planting}

It's time for our (mostly) weekly shout-outs.

Each Wednesday we are featuring individuals and groups who are working hard to fight climate change and save polar bears. We are celebrating people determined to help change the world through one action at a time.

- Clara Stahlmann Roeder, one of our Leadership Camp grads, earned the 2013 Sustainable St. Paul Award for Youth Leadership from Mayor Chris Coleman and the St. Paul City Council. In presenting the award, the mayor cited the countless hours that Clara devotes to speaking engagements, action programs, and scientific research to promote the need to reduce carbon emissions, along with her volunteer work with the Como Park Zoo and Conservatory's Nature Walk.

- Another Camp grad, Jeni Fain Smith, was recognized with a Sea Star Award from SeaWorld San Diego for her conservation efforts. Over the past year, she coordinated Polar Bear Week activities and International Polar Bear Day at SeaWorld's Wild Arctic exhibit. She also spearheaded a plastic bag polar bear project and organized the first-ever Employee Earth Hour event at SeaWorld.

- Polar bear scientist Andrew Derocher and other members of our Advisory Council are tireless in their outreach. We love this Earth Day blog post by a young conservationist, Lauren G., who writes that an email correspondence with the scientist literally changed her life and led to her involvement in environmental matters. (Have tissues handy for this one!)

- Plastic bag bears are catching on! Originally created by keepers at the North Carolina Zoo, other zoos in our Arctic Ambassador Center network are making bears of their own. The one below took center stage at the Party for the Planet Earth Day celebration at the Cleveland Metroparks Zoo. Guests were encouraged to bring in a plastic bag to help stuff the bear and received a reusable bag in return. The zoo handed out 1,000 reusable bags over the course of the day

- Neighborhoods near Denver's City Park are greener now thanks to Earth Day tree-planting efforts by the Denver Zoo Sustainability Team. In their outreach, the volunteers talked about how trees provide homes for animals and help reduce carbon in the atmosphere. The team's tree-planting program is part of the Acres for the Atmosphere effort coordinated by members of our Arctic Ambassador Center network.

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