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Obama Picks Commissioner for U.S. – Russia Polar Bear Commission

Published On: Nov 03 2013 01:32:48 PM AKST

On Friday, President Obama appointed the United States Commissioner for the U.S. – Russia polar bear commission.

Geoffrey L. Haskett, Regional Director for the Alaska Region of the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, will serve as U.S. commissioner. He has represented the U.S. since the Commission’s inaugural meeting in 2009.

The commission, established in 2000, created an agreement on the conservation and management of the Alaska-Chukotka polar Bear population. Both countries have two government and Native representatives on the commission.

“I am honored to be appointed by President Obama to the U.S.-Russia Polar Bear Commission,” Haskett said in a news release. “I look forward to working with the other commissioners on conservation of this shared, iconic species.”

In 2010, the Commission decided to place an upper limit on harvest from the Alaska-Chukotka population for total of 58 ( 19 female and 39 male) polar bears per year based on the recommendation of the scientific working group and identified subsistence needs.