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Children to learn how to help save polar bears


Monaco/Gland, Switzerland – WWF and Canon Europe launched today a “Save the Polar Bear” website as an educational tool to teach children about the environmental impacts of climate change.

The site — a microsite hosted on the enhanced WWF-Canon Polar Bear Tracker will have a variety of activities suitable for children aged from 7 to 11.

In fun and engaging ways, and with the aid of two animated polar bear cubs named Auro and Borea, children will learn about threats to polar bears’ habitat, about the issues and challenges of climate change, their own impact on the environment, and how they can each make a difference.

The Polar Bear Tracker was launched in 2002 by WWF’s Arctic Programme and the Norwegian Polar Institute to track polar bears in the Svalbard Archipelago. Canon recognized the importance of the project and became involved because polar bears are a key indicator of climate change and its effects on the Arctic. Thanks to Canon’s support, WWF is now able to increase its support for polar bear research and to gain valuable information on how changes in sea ice affect this charismatic species.

Due to global warming, the sea ice on which polar bears live melts earlier and earlier every year, leaving them with a smaller area in which to find food. Though pollution and hunting are other threats to polar bears, climate change is the biggest of them all. Unless humanity takes radical action to reduce its emissions of global warming gases such as carbon dioxide, we are unlikely to be able to save the polar bear.

The announcement of the children’s site is timed to coincide with Canon Europe’s 50th anniversary.

“WWF congratulates Canon Europe on its 50th anniversary and is pleased to be working with it on the new website,” said Paul Steele, WWF International’s Chief Operating Officer. “With Canon’s support, we hope to be able to reach the hearts and minds of children so that future generations will have the knowledge and impetus to make the necessary changes in their lifestyles to help conserve the environment"

Canon is a long-standing supporter of WWF, with Canon Europe becaming the global conservation organization’s first conservation partner in 1998. Canon’s support for this project is evidence of its positive steps towards assuming a position of environment leadership.

“Climate change and the associated issues of global warming and environmental consciousness are of crucial importance to the people of Canon, both as members of a socially responsible company and as individuals,” said James Leipnik, Chief of Communications and Corporate Relations at Canon Europe.

“We are proud to be supporting this important project as it has strong synergies with our corporate philosophy of Kyosei, which means living and working together for the common good. By working with WWF to address some of the key challenges of environmental sustainability through better understanding, we hope to engage as wide an audience as possible, from children to their parents and teachers, and encourage them to do their part for the environment.”


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