If you are reading this please take a minute – just one minute – out of your day and watch this video.
– Because this is what global warming looks like. I want you to imagine, 200, 300, 400 years from now, human beings, maybe your relatives, starving to death like this due to irreversible climate change.
There is no planet B.
Photographer Paul Nicklen shot the heart-wrenching footage recorded the scene with conservation group Sea Legacy and posted it on Instagram. He told the National Geographic: “we stood there crying—filming with tears rolling down our cheeks.”
The post has gone viral on social media. The photographer said that if he had tried to intervene it would have prolonged the bear’s inevitable death. Instead he posted the video on social media so all could see the awful impact of global warming.
The 21st century has seen more temperature records broken than any time in recorded history. Arctic sea ice coverage has shrunk every decade since 1979 by around 4%.
Nickels wrote on Instagram:
“My entire Sea Legacy team was pushing through their tears and emotions while documenting this dying polar bear.
“It’s a soul-crushing scene that still haunts me, but I know we need to share both the beautiful and the heartbreaking if we are going to break down the walls of apathy.
“This is what starvation looks like. The muscles atrophy. No energy. It’s a slow, painful death.
“When scientists say polar bears will be extinct in the next 100 years, I think of the global population of 25,000 bears dying in this manner.
“There is no band aid solution. There was no saving this individual bear. People think that we can put platforms in the ocean or we can feed the odd starving bear.
“The simple truth is this — if the Earth continues to warm, we will lose bears and entire polar ecosystems. This large male bear was not old, and he certainly died within hours or days of this moment.
“But there are solutions. We must reduce our carbon footprint, eat the right food, stop cutting down our forests, and begin putting the Earth — our home — first.”