Alaska The state of Alaska will sue to challenge the recent listing of polar bears as a threatened species, Gov. Sarah Palin announced Wednesday.
She and other Alaska elected officials fear a listing will cripple oil and gas development in prime polar bear habitat off the state's northern and northwestern coasts.
Palin argued that there is not enough evidence to support a listing. Polar bears are well-managed and their population has dramatically increased over 30 years as a result of conservation, she said.
Climate models that predict continued loss of sea ice, the main habitat of polar bears, during summers are unreliable, said Palin, a Republican.
The announcement drew a strong response from the primary author of the listing petition. "She's either grossly misinformed or intentionally misleading, and both are unbecoming," said Kassie Siegel of the Center for Biological Diversity. "Alaska deserves better."